Sunday, December 11, 2011

Book Review - Jane Was Here: A Novel by Sarah Kernochan

Title: Jane Was Here: A Novel
Author: Sarah Kernochan 
Year: 2011
Page: 318
Genre: Fiction

FTC Disclosure: A free copy from the Crazy Book Tours

Summary (from
A mysterious young woman called Jane appears in a small New England town. She claims a fragmentary memory of growing up in this place, yet she has never been here before in her life. Searching for an explanation, she arrives at the unthinkable: that she is somehow connected to a beautiful girl who disappeared from the town in 1853. Is she recalling a past life? Jane becomes convinced of it. As she presses onward to find out what happened in this town over 150 years ago, strange and alarming things begin happening to some of the town's inhabitants. A thunderhead of karmic justice gathers over the village as Jane's memories reawaken piece by piece. They carry her back in time to a long-buried secret, while the townspeople hurtle forward to a horrific event when past and present fatally collide.

First Sentence:

The night is pale, humid, with a few begrimed clouds.

My Thoughts:
  • I have been trying to limit the number of ARC or blog tours due to my schedule. However, I was attracted to this book based on the blurb - past life? Karma? Possibly reincarnation? Sounds very interesting!
  • I was intrigued in the beginning of the book, wondering who Jane was. However, I soon lost interest because there were a lot of characters introduced, and so the storyline became choppy. Also, I didn't really care about any of the characters, so there was no incentive for me to keep reading.
  • I read some other reviews on goodreads to see if I was missing out on the story. Some said they really like part 2 because there were all letters written in the past, and talked about the background. I know this sounds silly, but this part of the book was all written in italic, and it was just very difficult for me read text in italic. If it was just a page or two, that might have been okay, but we're talking about 50 pages here. To me, font, font size, font style is all part of the reading experience so that just deterred me from trying further.
  • I think this story might be better told in movies. With the visuals, the plot might not be as jarring or jumping around so much. Later on I read that the author is a screenwriter / director, so I wonder if that's why I thought her writing style is better suited to that. 
  • There are lots of good reviews out there though. In fact, don't forget to check out the tour! So far only one other tour post is written (as I'm 2nd on the tour) and it's VERY positive, so I really think it's just me.  Unfortunately this one is just not for me. While I do prefer plot driven to character driven novels, I do have to at least feel something for at least one character.

Overall Rating:

0 Star. Did not finish. Just not my style. But check out the blog tours as I am very picky on what I read! So it's probably just me, and not the book.

The scheduled tour stops:
12/11/2011  --  Psychotic State Book Reviews
12/12/2011  --  Mental Foodie
12/13/2011  --  Tiffany's Bookshelf
12/14/2011  --  Book of Secrets
12/15/2011  --  Endlessly Bookish
12/16/2011  --  Sinnful Books
12/18/2011  --  Proud Book Nerd
12/19/2011  --  True Book Addict/Castle Macabre
12/21/2011  --  WV Stitcher
12/23/2011  --  Reader Girls

A little bit about Sarah Kernochan:

Sarah Kernochan received early acclaim for her Academy Award winning documentary Marjoe. She then recorded two albums for RCA as a singer-songwriter. In 1977, her first novel Dry Hustle was published. Returning to film, she scripted the the film Nine and ½ Weeks, Impromptu, Sommersby, What Lies Beneath and All I Wanna Do, which she also directed. She received a second Academy Award in 2002 for her short documentary Thoth. 2010 brought the re-issue of Dry Hustle as an ebook, and a third album of songs. 2011 brings us to Jane Was Here; Sarah’s first love and teenage ambition – a novel about reincarnation.

All reviews and posts are copyrighted by Christa @ Mental Foodie. Please do not use or reprint them without written permission.


  1. I'm sorry you didn't enjoy the book, Christa. But we do agree on one major point - - I found the main characters unlikable as well.

    I also agree with you that the story would work well as a movie (not surprising given the author's background).

    Happy Monday!

  2. Sorry this one didn't work for you, Christa! Thanks for your honesty and for participating in the tour!