Review: The Jane and Berta in Me by Rita Maria Martinez

Challenge criteria: A book of poetry

(Disclaimer: I was sent this book by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This has in no way affected my opinion of the book, nor the outcome of the review.) 

Blurb: This spring marks the bicentennial of Charlotte Brontë’s birth. In her ambitious and timely debut, The Jane and Bertha in Me, Rita Maria Martinez celebrates Brontë’s classic novel Jane Eyre. Through wildly inventive, beautifully crafted persona poems, Martinez re-imagines Jane Eyre’s cast of characters in contemporary contexts, from Jane as an Avon saleslady to Bertha as a Stepford wife.

These lively, fun, poignant poems prove that Jane Eyre’s fictional universe is just as relevant today as it was so many years ago. The Jane and Bertha in Me is a must-read for any lover of Brontë’s work.


What I liked:

This book features Charlotte Bronte’s Jane and Berta, so lovers of classical fiction AND of poetry will definitely be pleased with this one.

I thought it was actually pretty cool to see Jane imagined in modern times, watching Larry King and heading to IKEA. It was, I felt, a much easier way to connect with the well known character. Especially for people like myself who haven’t actually read Jane Eyre (sorry.)

The poems are easily split into three sections, which do work well together. In these three sections we also meet other characters from Jane’s world, such as Edward and Mr Rochester.

What I didn’t like:

While there are several different types of poetry in the book (triptych poetry appears to engage some of the other characters) some of the poems changed method halfway through. I thought that a little messy and clunky.

I felt myself I would probably have connected more with the poems, had I actually read Jane Eyre.

Out of five?

Four. The poems are beautiful and engaging, but as some of them can change their path halfway through it made them slightly tougher to read than others.


2 thoughts on “Review: The Jane and Berta in Me by Rita Maria Martinez

  1. Pingback: The Jane and Bertha in Me by Rita Maria Martinez Blog Tour April 1-April 30 |

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