***Group Read: The Eyre Affair

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***Group Read: The Eyre Affair

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Nov. 6, 2010, 4:41pm

Hello all--several of us are going to be doing a group read of The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde starting December 1. If you're interested feel free to join us!

Nov. 6, 2010, 5:05pm

Can't wait!

Nov. 6, 2010, 8:26pm

I've added this thread to the group read list on our group home page.

Nov. 7, 2010, 8:47am

>3 drneutron: Thanks drneutron!

Nov. 7, 2010, 6:05pm

What a great book! The Green Dragon group did a group read a while ago and it was a great success, Have fun!!

Nov. 7, 2010, 8:55pm

I'm here.

Nov. 16, 2010, 10:10am

Awesome! I love The Eyre Affair!

Nov. 30, 2010, 7:26pm

Just bumping this thread up since tomorrow's December 1st already!

Ronincats had a good suggestion for splitting the book up--since there are 36 chapters (and it looks like the chapters are all fairly short) we could do chapters 1-10 in week one, chapters 11-24 in week two, and chapters 25-36 in week three.

Does that sound okay with everyone?

Nov. 30, 2010, 11:05pm

Sounds good to me.

Dez. 1, 2010, 10:26am

I'm getting my copy today. I have heard such great things about this book that I'm excited to start.

I think the reading time frame sounds perfect.

Dez. 1, 2010, 11:51am

Diese Nachricht wurde vom Autor gelöscht.

Dez. 1, 2010, 1:04pm

Angela, are you thinking we are the Jane Eyre group read? Because that's a different group. Just checking. That group can be found at


Dez. 1, 2010, 1:08pm

Ah, yes, thanks Roni! *blushes*
Well, I guess it's an easy enough mistake, since the two books are related!

Dez. 2, 2010, 2:33pm

I read this book recently but will follow your comments with interest. I am up to Something Rotten in the series.

Dez. 5, 2010, 1:26pm

Okay, so I cheated. I actually finished the book. But I'll restrict my comments so I don't give away any spoilers! I really like the play-on-words throughout, especially when it comes to characters' names. I thought going into it that I would need to be familiar with Jane Eyre, (and I am glad that I read it recently) but there's lots of other literary allusions too--Martin Chuzzlewit for one, and lots of Shakespeare. I really should brush up on my Shakespeare!

Dez. 5, 2010, 1:55pm

I thought going into it that I would need to be familiar with Jane Eyre, (and I am glad that I read it recently)

I actually regretted being familiar with Jane Eyre when I read this book. It's one of my favorite books, and I got angry at Fforde for flattening it and removing some of the wonderful aspects of the narrative and plot in order to fit it into the Thursday Next story. I think I would have enjoyed The Eyre Affair MUCH more if I had only a passing knowledge of Brontë's book.

Thus, I don't plan to ever read another of Fforde's novels, because I don't think I could bear being reminded of my similarity to the guys who argue about Shakespeare's identity.

Dez. 5, 2010, 2:39pm

>16 keristars: I can understand that. I actually liked knowing that there were some changes going on. I guess I felt removed enough from it that it didn't bother me.

Dez. 5, 2010, 3:01pm

>16 keristars: Shades of Grey: The Road to High Saffron is an excellent, quirky book, and it has almost no references to other literature (no more than any other book, I mean).

Dez. 5, 2010, 9:35pm

I'm re-reading Jane Eyre and The Eyre Affair concurrently this time. I'm at the beginning of Chapter 14 in the first and Chapter 12 in the second, so the scene on the stile has occurred in both books. I've never felt that Fforde was disrespectful of Jane Eyre--on the contrary, I think it is his affection for it that makes it the main focus of this book. Of course he can't reproduce the original in all its richness--no one could--but I do like the personality of Mr. Rochester here, and love that poor Pilot got to chase a stick finally!

The first ten chapters are primarily set-up for the rest of the book. We get acquainted with the alternate reality and the major characters. After this, the action will pick up.

A good resource for non-spoiler footnotes to clarify matters that might not be obvious to Americans is here:


Dez. 7, 2010, 8:39pm

Well, I think I might be the only one who hasn't finished it yet. In fact I didn't get as far as I'd hoped to and am only a few chapters in. Maybe some of the comments already mentioned will make more sense to me in a few more chapters...

So far I have enjoyed getting to know the main character. She seems rather bored with her career and maybe has some unspoken regrets about her past - the man in the picture. The world Fforde has created is starting to take shape and I'm looking forward to getting a little farther in tonight.

Dez. 8, 2010, 12:02am

#20: Don't feel bad about not finishing: I've been busy this week and haven't even gotten to start it yet.

Dez. 9, 2010, 10:38pm

I think we've just started the second week on the schedule, for Chapters 11-24 from December 8 through the 14th, right? I'm getting ready to start chapter 15.

Bearbeitet: Dez. 10, 2010, 10:10am

I ended on Chapter 10 last night so I am right behind you Roni.

I like the way each chapter begins with an excerpt from a book featuring Thursday and the operation she works for. It gives the book a certain anticipation that Thursday Next is going to be important sociologically (is that the right word? lol) speaking.

Also, we got to meet Landen in person! You sense he's important from the way Thursday keeps a picture of him and he is connected to her war days and brother. He's just as charming as I would expect him to be.

Roni, I think you were right in that the first ten chapters set it up. We met the hero, her family, her past romantic interest and the really, really bad guy. I'm ready for the action now! How's everyone else doing this week?

Bearbeitet: Dez. 13, 2010, 12:10am

I'm in the middle of chapter 20 tonight and wanted to log on and see where everyone else was, but all seems quiet. :) I know a few people have already long been finished, but is anyone in the middle of it like me? I'd be interested to hear everyone's thoughts.

Spoiler-y thoughts:

I have to say, I finished the chapter where she goes to help out her buddy Spike from a vampire. I found it to be very...random. I know the world she lives in is different from ours, but...maybe someone else can explain exactly why that was written in.

And thanks for the link above Roni. It's been very helpful. :)

Dez. 13, 2010, 12:59am

I finished up the book last night. I'm not sure who else is reading along with us right now. LibraryLover, any comments? How about some of the rest of you who had read it recently?

I agree with you that the chapter with Spike was not tied into anything else in this book, but almost all of these characters will be showing up later on in the series in more detail, including Spike. I suspect, however, it was written in simply because Fforde enjoyed it.

Dez. 13, 2010, 10:58am

25: That's good to know that Spike will show up later in the series because it was my intention to read more of the Thursday Next books. I really do enjoy Fforde's writing style. And I suppose since he's the author he's free to throw in whatever he wants. :)

Dez. 14, 2010, 9:20am

Spike and his misadventures with the undead and other hellish creatures play a much larger role in later books. Though I think he is still mostly just an amusing side story throughout the series.

Bearbeitet: Dez. 18, 2010, 1:05pm

Well, I finished up The Eyre Affair last night a little ahead of schedule, but I think choosing to do a group read around the holidays might have not been the best idea. I'm sure everyone has been preoccupied for that reason. If anyone is planning to read the next few books though, let me know and I'd be glad to read along. Here is what I posted to my own thread today:

I read this as part of a group read and wrapped it up a little early. The Eyre Affair was one of those books that I had heard praised a lot during 2010, so I just knew I had to read it. It has all the elements that appeal to me. A classic story wrapped up in a futuristic, alternative history sort of world. And at the center of it is Thursday Next, an agent specially meant to deal with things of a literature nature. Now that's a job I want.

That being said, I feel a tiny bit let down. While I enjoyed the book and thought it was a fun read, I just didn't feel wholly connected to it. Thursday was an interesting character, but she was hard to latch on to. And the ending felt a little wham, bam, the end. Maybe the whole thing had just been too hyped up by the time I got to it.

I think I will continue on with the series. If anyone else has, please let me know what you've thought of it.



About the ending...so, Thursday sticks around in Jane Eyre's world and changes the ending. I was okay with that. I mean, it's a book about a book and the author clearly didn't like the ending, so it was an interesting twist.

And the way Hades was killed...did I miss it, or was it explained why silver could hurt him? Was he a vampire? It did tie in the Spike chapter though because that's where she got the bullet. Lucky she had been carrying it around...

And the wedding. It was a funny scene when she goes to stop Landen's wedding, but I was surprised it ended with her own wedding. I thought maybe Fforde would stop it there and the next book would stretch it out a little longer.

How about everyone else? Thoughts?

Edited for my terrible spelling.

Dez. 24, 2010, 12:21pm

Sorry, it seems I've been neglecting this thread! Roni, thank you for the link. I didn't read all of it but what I did was very interesting. I think a reread at some point in the future with that as a guide would really enhance the book.

I liked the little Spike interlude too, although I thought it was a little random. Knowing he shows up later in other books makes more sense.

I also liked the concept of the ChronoGuard, how they affected time and how Thursday's father would show up intermittently. On the whole I enjoyed the book and I would someday like to read the others. I don't own any of them though, so it might be awhile before I do!