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Jenna Starborn by Sharon Shinn
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Jenna Starborn (edition 2002)

by Sharon Shinn

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4452323,513 (3.14)52
Member:readr
Title:Jenna Starborn
Authors:Sharon Shinn
Info:Ace Trade (2002), Edition: Ace trade paperback ed, Paperback, 381 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:*
Tags:fiction, Jane Eyre, adult

Work details

Jenna Starborn by Sharon Shinn

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  1. 50
    Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë (infiniteletters)
    infiniteletters: Why not read the original too?
  2. 10
    Cinder by Marissa Meyer (MyriadBooks)
  3. 10
    Shards of Honor by Lois McMaster Bujold (one-horse.library)
    one-horse.library: They're both basically Jane Eyre fan fiction, set in space. Except Shards of Honor is militant and Jenna Starborn romantic.
  4. 00
    Jane by April Lindner (foggidawn)
  5. 00
    The Secret of Dragonhome by John Peel (infiniteletters)
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» See also 52 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 23 (next | show all)
This was a gift from a friend, who rightly saw that someone who enjoys Jane Eyre, loves science fiction, and reads fanfic would appreciate such an endeavor.

Some of the best writing in this book is in the first few pages. In that opening page, Shinn really creates a pleasing echo of Bronte's voice and all of the sci-fi interpretations are so intriguing, you just have to keep reading.

I found the romance and characters stilted, but was fascinated throughout by Shinn's science fiction re-imagining of Jane Eyre. There was some really interesting world building in her recreation of a stratified class structure in the future. Jane's difficult journey once she leaves Thornfield was another brilliant bit of re-imagining. Some things did seem forced, most notably the storline about Adele's mother.

Overall, an enjoyable light read for anyone who enjoys both the genre and Bronte. ( )
1 vote endlesserror | Sep 27, 2013 |
In Jenna Starborn, Sharon Shinn gives us a science fiction version of Jane Eyre. As always, the level of complexity of the universe she creates is astounding. Worlds with their own distinctive cultures, an awesome problem-filled caste system, and the ability for the rich to do just about anything, include commission the creation of a baby in a gen tank.

Jenna is the cast off gen tank baby of Mrs. Rentner. When doctors find out that she's being neglected at home, they send her off to technical school, where she learns how to maintain and fix nuclear generators. Fast forward some years, and she arrives at Mr. Ravenbeck's house as a technician and finds that there is more to the place and to Mr. Ravenbeck than what first meets the eye.

To be honest, I enjoyed the changes that Shinn made to the original story. While the horse-and-carriage nineteenth century thing is great, I just think that spaceships, terraformed planets, computerized houses, and robots are even cooler. I loved immersing myself into another unique Shinn world, and figuring out this new universe kept me entertained for most of the time. However, unlike the original Jane Eyre, the characters just didn't draw me in. Mr. Ravenbeck's young ward, Amelia, didn't have the vivacity of Adele, and Jenna is nowhere near as feisty as Jane. While it makes Jenna and Mr. Ravenbeck's relationship less creepy and unhealthy, it also makes it fall flat and lack heat.

I also wished that this story could have been more different; I went through the whole novel, hoping to see some sort of tweak to the story, other than the fact that Mr. Ravenbeck falls in love with Jenna instead of the nanny character: Janet Ayreson. It was different in the sense that this story is put into a science fiction universe, but I was hoping for something more. In the end, it really is just the story of Jane Eyre with cyborgs and spaceships instead of crazy wives and horse carriages. (Okay, that sounds really cool, but you see what I'm getting at, right?) If you've read Jane Eyre, then the small sci-fi tweaks Shinn makes here and there will give you amusement, but that's about it. It really has nothing on the original. If you haven't read Jane Eyre, you probably won't love this book, to be honest. There isn't much in the way of heat and romance and the changes won't amuse you. In either case, it isn't very satisfying. A nice read, but lacking in depth. ( )
  sedelia | Oct 5, 2012 |
So this story is Jane Eyre in a sci-fi setting. There is almost no deviation from the original story, except to change it to sci-fi. I didn't realize this when I picked it up. The science fiction plays very little part in the story. It is written in dark, gothic style, much like I remember Jane Eyre. Readers looking for an adapted classic will like this, however someone interested in a sci-fi book will probably not. ( )
1 vote readr | Apr 25, 2011 |
I picked this up on a whim and tore through it. It's supposedly a retelling of Jane Eyre in a science fiction setting, which worked a lot better than I thought it would. Shinn didn't deviate from the original plot at all and it was interesting to see how SF-elements would play into the plot. It was even written in a very Bronte-esque style and made me want to reread the original again (it's been two years). Charming. ( )
  wisemetis | Apr 12, 2011 |
This book slavishly follows Jane Eyre, upon which it is based. Even though it's been several years since I last read Jane Eyre, I recognized, almost scene for scene everything in this homage to the original.Now, as someone whose writing frequently draws upon myth or fairy tale, I have no problem with basing a new work on something older. Unfortunately, taking an old book, even a classic you adore, and creating a [psuedo-]science-fiction setting in which to translate, almost word-for-word, the original story is not what I expect when a novel claims to draw inspiration from a prior work. This novel not only follows the original too closely, it does so to the detriment of the story. Characterizations appropriate to the time at which Jane Eyre was published, 1847, simply didn't work in the multi-planet space-faring future posited by Shinn, despite her conceit that replaced the British class system with one based on property rights. ( )
2 vote PamelaDLloyd | Dec 2, 2010 |
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For Jean, with whom I had the conversation about tigers
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You would think that if someone commissioned your conception, paid for your gestation, and claimed you immediately after your harvesting, she would love you with her whole heart; but you would be wrong.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0441010296, Mass Market Paperback)

From the award-winning author of the Samaria trilogy-a classic story of a woman with the will to rise above the darkest secrets...

A baby harvested from the gen-tanks on the planet Baldus.

A girl scorned by the only family she has ever known.

A woman brave enough to follow her heart-wherever in the universe it may lead her.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:20:58 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

"There is only one Jenna Starborn. A baby harvested from the gen-tanks on the planet Baldus. A girl scorned by the only family she has ever known. A woman bold enough to seek her own way, strong enough to stay true to herself, and brave enough to follow her heart - wherever in the universe it may lead her."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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