Jane Eyre (A Weekend to ReCOVER)

Recently I received a paperback copy of Jane Eyre (I read it originally on my Kindle) with the following cover:

This is the movie tie-in cover from the most recent film adaptation, but I actually really like the stylized form of the very plain looking Jane superimposed with the profile of Mr. Rochester.  A while back I did a cover survey of Emma by Jane Austen after I noticed a reader with a very contemporary-styled dust jacket on the book and I thought it would be interesting to do a similar broad scoped comparison of covers for Jane Eyre.

Check out even more covers here.  Quite the variety and stylistic approach.  I'm always amazed at the marketing that goes into redesigning a classic and I often wonder if these new approaches really draw new readers in.  I'm sort of of the impression that most people reading Jane Eyre are reading it for a purpose (such as, "I have to write a five page English Lit paper on Jane Eyre, I should probably read it" or "Gee, I'm thirty years old and I've never read Jane Eyre, I should remedy that situation"), but it's fully possible that there are casual readers that wander into their local bookstore and think that Charlotte Bronte is some hot new author and want to check out her latest work.
Do you have a favorite Jane Eyre cover?  Do you prefer the more modern or the more classic styles?  Which covers most evoke the story to you?
A Weekend to ReCOVER is a meme hosted by Her Book Self that is dedicated to analyzing, comparing and discussing cover art.  Feel free to share your thoughts on the Jane Eyre covers here or link up with your own post to talk about these covers or any book art that strikes your fancy!

9 Response to "Jane Eyre (A Weekend to ReCOVER)"

  1. Ellen aka Ellie says:
    May 1, 2011 at 9:29 PM

    The RED flower, RED lips one reminds me of the Twilight cover, and you KNOW how I feel about that book...

  2. Alexis @ Reflections of a Bookaholic says:
    May 1, 2011 at 9:48 PM

    I agree. Most people who are reading it are reading for class, but even schools buy them based on their cover. Well I'm thinking they do. I always pick the prettiest cover that I can, especially with a classic.

  3. Danielle Zappavigna says:
    May 2, 2011 at 12:07 AM

    Lol I am definitely in the 'Crap I'm 32 years old and never read this!' category - at least I was, until recently browsing in my fave bookshop I came across the Ruben Toledo edition (second in the top line) and had to have it! I finished reading it a short time ago and loved it, I can't believe it took me so long to get around to reading it.

  4. biblioholic29 says:
    May 2, 2011 at 8:49 AM

    My last few trips to the bookstore I've been drawn to the one in the middle of the top line before realizing what the book was. I already own two copies so I never buy it, but I think it definitely says something that I go to it every single time based solely on the look of the cover.

  5. Jen (@ Jens Book Closet) says:
    May 2, 2011 at 3:30 PM

    I'd say that my favorites are on the top, the 2 on the right (top). I also like the one third row down all the way on the right. I really like posts like these. I forget how many recovers they do. I also forget how many different covers come up from different publishers and different countries. I think I may prefer the recovers over the originals. Although, old school meets new school is always fun. :D

    In the Closet With a Bibliophile

  6. Enbrethiliel says:
    May 5, 2011 at 1:17 PM


    Jane Eyre is one of my favourite books in the world--possibly THE favourite--and I suspect the familiarity with it is what makes me indifferent to all its new covers. Honestly, I haven't seen one that really took my breath away or made me say, "That's it! That is exactly what Jane Eyre is about!"

    I'm not very fond of the overly romantic covers, like the pre-Raphaelite one in the bottom right corner. Jane isn't a pre-Raphaelite heroine at all! And spare me the flower covers!

    Nor do the Thornfield covers please me: it might be gloomy and Gothic in atmosphere, but if we go back to the description, we recall that it's actually a sunny, happy looking manor house.

    Of all the covers you've displayed, Lisa, I like the one in the middle of the second row best. The first meeting between Jane and Mr. Rochester is one of the most significant parts of the story. I can't tell whether the artist got the faces just right ("just right" meaning the very subjective "perfect for me"--LOL!), but I like getting an "action" cover for this book. And how appropriate, too, if we remember that Jane openly longs for action!

  7. lisa :) says:
    May 5, 2011 at 9:27 PM

    Thanks for all the feedback! I suspected a lot of people would be drawn to the Ruben Toledo edition (as mummazappa identified it). I've heard it described as Tim Burton-esque and it is rather eye-catching.

    I also don't like the flowery ones that look like Twilight knockoffs, but there is something to be said about the popularity of Twilight stemming in part from the brilliant marketing. Say what you want about the books, but the cover of Meyer's first really was an eye-catcher. I don't actually expect that tween girls will be more drawn to Jane Eyre because of a bright flower on a stark cover, but perhaps some nerdy teen will get less eye-rolling from friends by reading a classic covered with a modern style.

    And Enbrethilial, great point about the cover with the horse. I had to include that one because it's really the only one I found that had anything at all to do with the plot! I suppose the original was published plainly and gained its fame in standard binding so when cover art was eventually an option most audiences knew enough about the plot not to have to advertise it. Of course this doesn't explain why today's novels can get away with covers that have nothing to do with their stories... ;)

  8. Anonymous Says:
    May 6, 2011 at 1:33 PM

    I think I like the new tie-in version best. It's funny though, I hadn't noticed Mr. Rochester's face until you mentioned it. It's a shame that it's been so long since I read Jane Eyre I don't remember the plot at all.

  9. vvb32 reads says:
    May 6, 2011 at 5:56 PM

    i like this meme! i do prefer the more gothic classic look for jane eyre. the red and white number doesn't evoke the right feel.
    btw: loved the movie

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