OK, my feelings about this book are a bit mixed up but overall positive. Let’s start with what it’s about.
The novel takes place in 1985-ish Britain, but a bit quirky – time travel just kind of happens, cloned pets are all the rage, and literature is a SERIOUS thing. Like, people will fight over who was the real Shakespeare, and there’s a whole SpecOps field for protecting the sanctity of the written word – Thursday Next is one such Literary Detective. When people start disappearing into books and characters in major classics start going missing, Thursday is the girl to call. But she’ll have to face a serious big-time baddie to save the day.
So, overall an awesome premise and I found the whole world created pretty fascinating. I loved reading about how different things were. And Thursday herself is a pretty cool gal. She’s tough, although a little damaged from her time as a soldier. And then there was my favorite character – Hades. Acheron Hades is the big bad guy, and I LOVED him. I know, I know – I’m generally not supposed to like the villain. But I loved his intellect, sharp humor, and just general psychopath-ness.
Now, I have two kind of small complaints. One is that this is all uber-British, which is fine. I like England. However, since I’m not British, I found that a whole lot of things just went right over my head. I didn’t get a lot of little jokes that I feel like I should have gotten. There’s an online reference guide somewhere for that stuff, but I wasn’t always near the computer while reading so I kind of had to just gloss over the wacky British things I didn’t get.
My other small complaint is that the title, and the blurb on the back of the book, lead most to think that majority of this book concerns the fact that Jane Eyre goes missing from that famous Charlotte Bronte novel. But it actually kind of took a long time to get to that, so I was mildly disappointed by that. I’d be more disappointed if I was actually a fan of Jane Eyre, but I’m not. That kind of worked in my favor here.
Anyhoo, this was a fun, different novel with equally fun and different characters. Also, some of these characters just have the BEST names. I won’t type them here, cause you should go read it and find out for yourself. So go give it a try. I’ll be picking up the sequels eventually.
Sarah Says: 4 stars