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Mr. Rochester

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May 9, 2017




A deft and irresistible retelling of Charlotte Brontë's beloved classic Jane Eyre—from the point of view of the dashing, mysterious Mr. Rochester himself.

"A cracking-good read!" —People, Best New Books

For 170 years, Edward Fairfax Rochester has stood as one of literature's most complex and captivating romantic heroes. Sometimes cruel, sometimes tender, Jane Eyre's mercurial master at Thornfield Hall has mesmerized, beguiled, and, yes, baffled fans of Charlotte Brontë's masterpiece for generations. But his own story has never been told.

We first meet this brilliant, tormented hero as a motherless boy roaming Thornfield's lonely corridors. On the morning of Edward's eighth birthday, his father issues a decree: He is to be sent away to get an education, exiled from all he ever loved. Young Edward's journey will take him across working-class England and the decadence of continental Europe before he lands on the warm, languid shores of faraway Jamaica, where his inheritance lies.

That island, however, holds secrets of its own, and Edward soon grows entangled in morally dubious business dealings and a passionate, whirlwind love affair with the town's ravishing heiress, Bertha Antoinetta Mason. Eventually, in the wake of a devastating betrayal, Edward must return to England with his increasingly unstable wife to take over as master of Thornfield. And it is there, on a twilight ride, that he meets the stubborn, plain young governess who will steal his heart and teach him how to love again.

Mr. Rochester is a sweeping coming-of-age story and a stirring tale of adventure, romance, and deceit. Faithful in every particular to Brontë's original yet full of unexpected twists and riveting behind-the-scenes drama, this novel will completely, deliciously, and forever change how we read and remember Jane Eyre.

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"Satisfying... If you haven't read Jane Eyre, suspense is keen as the climactic end approaches. If you have - as will most of those who come to Mr. Rochester - the novel's dramatic final act provides the quieter pleasure of revisiting one of literature's great love stories from a fresh perspective."—USA Today
"A cracking-good read!"—People, Best New Books
"Lovers of Emily Brontë and Jane Eyre, this one's for you: If you've ever wondered about the backstory of the man who Jane eventually teaches to love again, Mr. Rochester is officially wish fulfillment."—Refinery29
"A winner! Even if you never read Jane Eyre, you would still find Mr. Edward Fairfax Rochester fascinating and hang on every word of his extraordinary story, told in perfect nineteenth-century language. A richly rewarding read."—Margaret George, New York Times bestselling author of Elizabeth I: A Novel and The Confessions of Young Nero
"With flair and heart, MR. ROCHESTER tells the story that legions of Jane Eyre fans have been waiting more than a century to hear. Sarah Shoemaker's impressive novel takes readers into the mind of one of literature's most vexing and compelling romantic heroes and paints a nuanced portrait of a man torn between responsibility and passion. Packed with historical detail and a fresh look at a classic story, MR. ROCHESTER is a page-turning delight."—Tara Conklin, New York Times bestselling author of The House Girl
"Prepare to be swept off your feet by Sarah Shoemaker's stunning MR. ROCHESTER. As one of countless readers who adored Charlotte Brontë's Jane Eyre, but never quite understood what Jane saw in Mr. Rochester, I was spellbound. Beautifully written, exquisitely crafted, and deeply engaging, MR. ROCHESTER is pure book club gold."—Mary Sharratt, author of The Dark Lady's Mask: A Novel of Shakespeare's Muse and Illuminations: A Novel of Hildegard Von Bingen
"Shoemaker's detailed writing will transport readers to a bygone age of romance and heartbreak."—Publishers Weekly
"Mr. Rochester is beautifully paced and compelling as it delivers a sweeping narrative and a new perspective to one of literature's most famous love stories... Though the novel will appeal most to fans of Jane Eyre, Shoemaker has recreated the spirit of the original, which will help those unfamiliar with the text enjoy this retelling."—BookPage
"It's interesting to Shoemaker constructs a biography from the information provided in Bronte's novel and also to see the events familiar from that novel through [Rochester's] point of view. Recommend this to anyone eager for another take on Jane Eyre."—Booklist
"Compelling...Shoemaker knows her Brontë well, channeling her so expertly that it's easy to imagine that one author wrote both novels."— Star Tribune
"Shoemaker's elegant prose is worth reading at every step. Charlotte Brontë's mercurial hero is brought to brilliant life in this novel. Highly recommended."—Historical Novels Review
"There is a Dickensian quality to the story... The wonderfully executed details of Victorian life in England and Jamaica add to the atmosphere and lure the reader deeper into the tale... many will be fascinated with Edward's side of the story."—RT Book Reviews
"Mr. Rochester... is nothing less than captivating... A realistic and entertaining narrative... If Charlotte Bronte were alive, I cannot help but think that she would be pleased..."—Old Mission Gazette
"Mr. Rochester is a great, sweeping, classic coming-of-age story, and a stirring tale of adventure, romance, and deceit."—Roses are Blue
"Thoroughly satisfying and creatively imagined...It's a bold task to take on a heroic figure from such a well-loved novel, and it's easy to imagine fans rejecting any attempt to dabble with a story often read not once but several times. However, readers are safe and well entertained in Shoemaker's capable hands....Both fans of Jane Eyre and readers new to the story will delight in this novel. Not only will they discover who and what shaped Rochester into a dashing but infuriating landowner who is equal parts forceful and capricious, but they will also enjoy a compelling tale in its own right."

p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 12.0px Helvetica; color: #010e66}span.s1 {font-kerning: none}Washington Independent Review of Books
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