When I read My Lady Jane two years ago, it became an immediate favorite. I laugh so much in real life, and also when watching movies or TV, but not so much when I read. My Lady Jane was irresistibly funny, so My Plain Jane was an anticipated read from the moment the cover was released and its arrival became oh so real.
My Plain Jane is a loose retelling of Jane Eyre, told from the POV of Charlotte Bronte, Jane Eyre (a real person!) and ghost hunter Alexander Blackwood. Ghosts and supernatural beings are abundant in this one.
For the diehard fans of the Ladies Janies, this message doesn’t need repeating, but I still see people ask…so here goes. You do not have to read My Lady Jane to read My Plain Jane. They are similar because they are written by the same authors about a famous Jane. The titles are similar. The covers are similar. The marketing techniques are similar. But no, the books are not related in the slightest aside from a blink-and-you-miss-it nod to My Lady Jane in the final chapters. You also don’t need Jane Eyre to appreciate it…I’ve never read Jane Eyre. Or even seen a movie adaptation. If you are familar with Jane Eyre, I have no idea what reception you may have to this. My guess is this story is very different…
I’ve seen a bit of a mixed reception to this one, but I loved it nonetheless. My Plain Jane is funny and unique and full of references you didn’t know you needed. There is a laugh-out-loud funny Harry Potter joke, an all-time-fave Scooby Doo reference and lots of Princess Bride nods mixed in, which makes sense most of all due to the tonal similarities in between it and the Ladies Janies books.
This book has aspects that don’t go well in all books, but certainly worked in the favor of this one. The romance is adorably sweet rather than swoonworthy. The supernatural aspects are wild and even WILDER. The big reveals are unexpected but not out of left field. The women of this book are also admirably determined, and also quite adorably odd. There is a lot of adorable, and a lot of fun.
At this point it’s hard for me to imagine the Ladies Janies creating a book that I don’t love. I can’t wait for My Calamity Jane!