After an abusive childhood and chaotic college years, Jane Daugherty finally has her life together. True, she has neither friends nor family-- but she has a job and a roof over her head, of a sorts, and she is determined to prove that those are all she needs...
... until a figure from her tortured past reemerges in Jane's life, and she is forced to confront everything she has never had: a comfortable lifestyle, freedom from care, and a loving family. And Jane finds herself wondering if she can trust again, or if her heart will forever be broken.
Jane deals with many complex, mature issues, and as such, I would not recommend it to anyone shy of eighteen. And because I unavoidably must bring up a few of those issues in this book review, I ask that young readers continue cautiously beyond this point.
I am generally not a fan of romance like Jane, but I have always adored a tortured heroine struggling to repair herself on her own, which the title character undoubtedly is. The character of Jane was incredibly traumatized, both physically and psychologically, and I appreciated her journey to realizing that she couldn't fix herself alone.
Jane addressed meaty topics like social class, age, and race. Particularly it takes a close, hard look at which relationships and activities are acceptable prior to marriage. Here Ms. Onuorah took a great risk: throughout the course of the novel, Jane's ideas on this topic radically change from a blasé to a much more conservative opinion. Ms. Onuorah portrays all of this. Although I appreciate her honesty, I did not want to read about that, and quite frankly, I did not. Every time a scene contained something with which I was not comfortable, I skipped it. I do not feel like I missed anything.
Despite this, Jane had realistic characters, heartbreakingly beautiful family ties, and a searching look at a damaged soul. Jane is a heavy novel despite its small size and one that fans of realistic romance with an ability to skim will no doubt enjoy.