The Secret Diaries of Charlotte Bronte: Book for a Bohemian Season

My recent vacation was an amazing opportunity to do some reading.  I felt as if I were lugging my Kindle around everywhere, although I actually got less reading done than I anticipated.

I have to say though, I ended up finding a book I adored - one that touched me "here" (putting hand over heart): The Secret Diaries of Charlotte Bronte by Syrie James.  This had been on my "to read" list for quite awhile, but my expectations were middling.  First of all, I don't know a heck of a lot about the Brontes.  I have, of course, read Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights and seen many film adaptations of the same, but I don't remember a lot about the Brontes.  So it was a joy to read the story with no expectations.  It wasn't fiction, but for me it read as fiction - I didn't know what was coming.

I have to say the reasons I LOVED this book were:
  • It was written in a style that was easy to read, yet the voice seemed very right.
  • This family, with their wild imaginations and art and poetry and stories are so inspiring to fellow creatives.
  • A sincere, serious, artistic, intellectually curious and underdog heroine - a poor spinster who refused to be limited or defined by that label.
  • Sisters who truly loved each other, who collaborated with each other as writers - so amazing!
  • Interesting twists and turns - for a real life story.
  • Insightful explanations into some of the background and story behind the story of Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights.
  • Romance, of course - an unexpected sweet, rocky romance.
  • And overall a sense of the precious beauty of life, even when short-lived.

Now I'm very curious to sample some other books by Syrie James... And I'm excited about the upcoming Jane Eyre film in 2011!