Cora Holmes

Three time Independant Publisher award winner Cora Holmes started her writing career with Reiman Publications at Country Magazine. Her first two books, Goodbye, Boise-Hello, Alaska, and "Dear Cora..." were published by Reiman Publications and sold nearly one hundred thousand copies. When Reader's Digest bought Reiman Publications in 2002 she started her own publishing company, Legend Books, and has published five books under that logo. After living in Alaska's Aleutian Islands for thirty-seven years she now divides her time between Idaho and Alaska where she is continuing the Aleutian sheep  ...See more >


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"A book that offers pleasures of recognition and revelation for devoted fans of Jane Eyre."

Kirkus Reviews


AWARDS, PRESS & INTERESTS

Independent Publisher Award, 2016: Rochester: A MEMOIR

Pinnacle Book Achievement Award, 2016: Rochester: A MEMOIR


BOOKS REVIEWED BY KIRKUS:

Pub Date:
ISBN: 978-0-9972741-0-3
Page count: 299pp

Holmes’ (Alaska’s Wild West, 2014, etc.) historical novel re-examines Edward Rochester’s conflicted pursuit of Jane Eyre from Rochester’s perspective.

This retelling of Charlotte Brontë’s classic 1847 novel opens on Rochester’s first encounter with “Miss Eyre,” his ward’s governess—whom he notes “doesn’t look above a child herself, a fairy creature”—on the road to his ancestral home, Thornfield Hall. Although he’s soon captivated by Jane’s unflappable manner, unusual beauty, and paintings—“fierce, raw, full of nature’s violence and something more, something otherworldly”—he’s constrained by his marriage to the insane Bertha Mason, who’s hidden on Thornfield’s third floor. Although he deeply resents being tricked into marrying Bertha as a young man, he sees her confinement as a merciful alternative to an asylum where “the shackles never come off.” Overall, because this book’s plot and sensibility are so closely interlocked with Jane Eyre’s, it may be less rewarding for readers unfamiliar with the source material. For example, in addition to Rochester’s past, Holmes fills in new details about his estate management, showing his generous aspect as well as the practical details of Georgian country life, including the threat of his workforce immigrating to America. The novel’s frankness about Rochester and Jane’s sexual attraction isn’t uniformly graceful; for example, there’s something jarring about Jane communicating her breathless realization to Rochester that they will be joined “by [their] nether parts.” However, the author does enhance the sense of Thornfield as a grounded, vivid place. The first-person narration captures Rochester’s wry cynicism, juxtaposing it with his more vulnerable thoughts. As he and Jane become closer, he has increasing difficulty concealing the evidence of his wife’s violent rages. Bertha’s heritage “of idiots and maniacs” is compounded here by the revelation of multiple generations of incestuous family history. This further entangles Bertha’s madness with Gothic obsessions with sex, bloodlines, and purity; here, she’s rendered so monstrous that, for all his suffering, Rochester gets off the hook a little too easily for his attempted bigamy.

A book that offers pleasures of recognition and revelation for devoted fans of Jane Eyre.

ADDITIONAL WORKS AVAILABLE:

ALASKA'S WILD WEST: THE TRUE STORY OF ALASKA'S RANGE WARS IN THE ALEUTIAN ISLANDS VOLUME 1
Non-Fiction

ISBN: 9780977403696
View on Amazon


KILLIAN AND THE BELL
Non-Fiction

ISBN: 0977403629
View on Amazon


OUTSIDE MAN
Fiction

ISBN: 9780977403615
View on Amazon


TIME OF THE OTTER
Fiction

ISBN: 9780977403646
View on Amazon