Saturday, November 12, 2016

Jane Eyre Read-Along: Chapter 38

And they all lived happily ever after :-)

Isn't it interesting that St. John Rivers gets the last word?  He writes a last, dying letter to Jane, and his final words are what Jane leaves us with.  I'm not sure what to make of that -- there's probably something profound in the fact that here, at the end, she and St. John are of one accord, but if there is, I'm missing it.

But anyway, we've finished the book :-)  Jane and Rochester are married, happy together, happy being parents of at least one child, and there we leave them.  I do find it interesting that the most famous line in this book is "Reader, I married him" (p. 520).  Not "he married me" or "we married," but "I married him."  The perfect phrasing for strong, independent, glorious Jane, isn't it?  This was her decision, her choice, her will.  She makes it clear that it was equally Rochester's, but he did not make this decision for her, he did not exercise his will over hers.  Theirs is a marriage of equals, which it would not have been if they'd married when they originally intended to.  Now, they can be happy, because now they are free and equal.

Thank you for reading this book with me!  It's been a rather protracted read-along, but I hope you've enjoyed it even at this leisurely pace.  I know I have.

Time for a giveaway!  You can enter it here :-)


Favorite Lines:

I know what it is to live entirely for and with what I love best on earth (p. 522).

I am my husband's life as fully as he is mine (p. 522).

12 comments:

  1. Oh! I love happy endings! Thank you so so much for doing this Hameltte!!! It has been so fun to reread Jane Eyre!!!!!!!!

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    1. MC, happy endings are the best :-) Thank you for joining it!

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  2. Thank you so much for this WONDERFUL read-a-long, Hamlette!! It was such fun and I'm so happy it was the first one I joined in on. You curated it splendidly and I'll look forward to joining another read-a-long by you some day. :) :)

    Ps. That second quote, though. Awww. <3

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    1. Natalie, thank YOU for all your great participation! I hope to lead another read-along next summer, but for something shorter. We'll see how it goes :-)

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  3. Having a read-along was such a great idea! Maybe early Evelyn Waugh novels in the future? ...Or is that too obscure?

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    1. Thanks, John! I must admit I've only read a few shorter things by Evelyn Waugh, but I'd like to try Brideshead Revisited some day. If you want to see the books I've been considering for a read-along, they're on my Prospective and Planned Read-Alongs page.

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  4. I'm sorry I've been scare around here for awhile, but I did finish the book! It was good timing too, because with the schedule my home school group is on, I'm supposed to start Jane Eyre this week.

    This chapter was lovely-- it ended happily, and Charlotte Bronte tied all the loose strings.

    Thank you for hosting this!! It's probably a good thing it went slower than you anticipated because otherwise I'd be quite behind!

    I hope to be on board for the next one. You have some great books on the Prospective and Planned Read-Alongs page. :)

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    1. Yay! So glad you finished it, Meredith. How cool that its worked with your schoolwork so neatly.

      I'm happy nobody got really impatient for me to finish the book -- sometimes a leisurely pace is nice, huh?

      RIght now, I'm considering The Great Gatsby for next summer. It's got a summery feel, and it's not all that long, so finishing it in a couple months *should* be feasible.

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    2. Oops, just read my comment again; it's supposed to be "scarce" not "scare". Hopefully it still made sense!

      Oh, the other cool things it that I'm supposed to write a paper about whether Jane and Mr. Rochester changed as characters or whether it was simply their circumstances that changed, and your post for chapter 37(I think) gave me some interesting things to think about and include. :D

      I shouldn't make commitments yet, but I will likely be interested for that!

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    3. Meredith, I did figure your sentence out ;-)

      What a cool paper!!! My personal opinion would be both, lol.

      Nothing's set in stone for next summer, so just... keep an eye out ;-)

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  5. It is a weird ending, I hadn't remembered it as such... Which proves again that it was high time I reread Jane Eyre and I'm so glad I did it with this read-along of yours, it was a lot of fun!

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    1. Birdie, thanks for joining in! I agree, we had a lot of good fun :-)

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