Whenever I feel scared or anxious, I like to seek comfort in a familiar story. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë is my favorite novel. I’ve read it so many times that I’ve lost count. Published in 1847, Jane Eyre is a gothic novel filled with hardships, romance, jealousy, secrets, and female rebellion.

The story is set in a remote region of northern England during the early 1800s. Jane is a passionate young woman with a temper. Orphaned at a young age and unloved by her Aunt, she is sent to Lowood Boarding school at the age of ten. The suffering she experienced while attending this school has a profound impact on Jane. Years later, she moves to Thornfield Hall to fill the position of governess. Here she meets kindred spirit, Edward Fairfax Rochester, the brooding master of the estate. Mysterious happenings at Thornfield Hall increase in frequency as the love between Jane and Rochester grows. Jane’s fear becomes realized with the unveiling of a horrific secret. Even though I’d like to share the end to our tale, reader, you must discover it for yourself.

Over the years there have been many film and TV adaptations of this story. If you are looking for something to do while social distancing, I suggest reading Jane Eyre and afterwards watching a film adaptation. Compare the book to the movie. What scenes were left out? How did that impact the interpretation of the story? Did you agree or disagree with the decision to cut that scene? The library offers eBook copies of Jane Eyre through both Overdrive and Hoopla. Hoopla also offers the 1996 film adaptation starring Charlotte Gainsbourg and William Hurt.