Jane: The Woman Who Loved Tarzan
By Robin Maxwell
Reader Reviews from Amazon.com
From the first half of 2013
Ranking: 4.2 out of 5 stars (74 customer reviews)
5 star: 40% ~ 4 star: 22% ~ 3 star: 5% ~ 2 star: 3% ~ 1 star: 4%
5/5 STARS: A Jane for Today's Woman, April 4, 2013
By Sharon Ann Backman "SharB"
When I found that this book was available, I couldn't wait to open it and start reading. Yes, it is hard to put down and pulls you in to Jane's experiences and, of course, those of Tarzan's development. I am also one of those who has never read ERB's novels, but now I will. Jane Goodall even read Jane: The Woman Who Loved Tarzan and really enjoyed it. Please note that this was blessed by Edgar Rice Burrough's estate and lawyers. You won't find anything like it was that credential! Now I've got to start reading more of Mrs. Maxwell's books! Irresistible!
5/5 STARS: Jane: Filled With Drama and Excitement, March 8, 2013
By Joyce Owen/Robert Owen
Robin Maxwell, in writing Jane: The Woman Who Loved Tarzan, has created an instant classic and I feel sure it will endure the test of time. Her novel is absorbing and filled with interesting characters that are developed with great skill. Jane's father, Archimedes Phinneaus Porter is a Paleoanthrologist and Jane, his daughter, is an avid student of this science. And that is what launches them into the most fantastic adventure of their lives. Halfway through the book the action picks up and races to a heart-pounding conclusion.
Apparently Edgar Rice Burroughs Inc. had given Ms Maxwell creative freedom to write Jane's story as she saw fit. Well Ms Maxwell ran with it and a great adventure tale has emerged that will be read and loved by fans of fantastic literature for decades to come. It was a brilliant move to include Edgar Rice Burroughs himself in the story and have Jane relate her narrative to him. Jane knew ERB would use it to write a great piece of fantastic fiction, and of course he did. He used her story as a basis for his soon-to-be classic, Tarzan of the Apes.
Robin Maxwell is a talented story-teller who specializes in creating strong female characters, based on real-life women in history, playing prominent roles in her historical fiction dramas. Jane: The Woman Who Loved Tarzan should stand tall with her other works. Or any other author's works.
I love this book and highly reccommend it to anyone and everyone.
4/5 STARS: wow!
By Jennifer - May 22, 2013
I didn't know what to expect when I bought this but it really blew me away. it started off a little slow but really kicked it up a notch by the middle. I really hope there is a sequel.
5/5 STARS: Good read.
By Martha J. Gilmore, May 21, 2013
I have read almost all of ERB Tarzan books, and this could be a companion to the first four. It fits nicely into the iconic books.
5/5 STARS: Review on Jane
By Michael D. Cummings "planesman" (Seattle Wa), April 15, 2013
An amazing portrayal of the story about Jane and Tarzan written in a way that is not only accurate, but also makes the famous story of the man who lives in the wild relatable and enticing.
5/5 STARS: 'There is no Tarzan without Jane'
By Nik Morton (Alicante, Spain), March 30, 2013
Like fans worldwide, I've always felt that the films never did Lord Greystoke justice. So, it was with a little trepidation that I tackled this book.
What many film-makers neglected but this novel recognizes, `There is no Tarzan without Jane', to quote John R Burroughs. As I became immersed in the tale, all fears for the treatment of the lord of the jungle evaporated. It was obvious that this was a work of love and respect for the original, a worthy homage.
The book begins in 1912 Chicago where Jane Porter is giving a talk about the missing link she found in Africa. Her claims cause heated controversy among several academic and scientific attendees and, ultimately, a Mr E.R. Burroughs, a young author, takes her aside and expresses an interest in her tale about an ape man. Sequestered together, Jane tells all to Burroughs. This is Jane's first person narrative we're about to read, beginning in 1905.
Maxwell cleverly weaves her tale, using the basic elements of the original but grafting on much that is new and intriguing. Seeing this tale from Jane's perspective works exceedingly well for me. The period and character are beautifully captured - perhaps I should have expected nothing less from an accredited author of historical fiction.
There is much that is familiar - the story of Tarzan's origin, though shifted by date for purposes of realism, the Waziri, d'Arnot, Jane's father, and the Mangani. The vain and dashing explorer Ral Conrath makes a suitable bad guy, but the real villain is Kerchak, the killer ape. Yet they're given slight twists to fit this retelling; to stick to the original in every respect would have been a creative straitjacket and unworthy, and fortunately both Jim Sullos, custodian of the legend, and grandson John R Burroughs agreed. In his works, Burroughs did a lot of research for his books, and Maxwell has emulated him with a sure touch, delving into the paleo-anthropological details, the descriptions of the Dark Continent and even the history of Cambridge University, yet at no times imposing swathes of mind-numbing information on the reader.
There are several poignant moments - not least the reading of Alice's diary, the vaguely recalled past of young Tarzan and the erotic yet tasteful relationship between the ape man and his mate, Jane.
You don't have to have read any Tarzan book to appreciate this wonderful novel. If you have read some of the ape man's adventures, then you'll find much to please you in this retelling, bringing the lord of the jungle back to an adult readership, Burroughs' intended audience.
5/5 STARS: jane, med student at cambridge u in england
By gloria merritt, March 18, 2013
Was delivered immediately after ordering, just in time for bookclub choices for 2013. we're excited to read this book, esp since my family lived only 14 miles from cambridge u for 11 years! Should give us real incite to the u.
5/5 STARS: I loved this adventure---& from a woman's viewpoint!
By K. D. Davie "kddidit" (Denver CO), March 11, 2013
Heck, I've always loved the Tarzan movies and I keep meaning to get round to Burrough's words. This might be the novel that sets me in search of the first---Tarzan of the Apes (Tarzan, #1).With the Edgar Rice Burroughs Estate blessing, Maxwell provides us with Jane's perspective on the Ape-Man who rescued her from certain death.
This really is good. If you enjoy the Tarzan stories (or movies!), you will enjoy this perspective of an "emancipated" woman of 1905, whose dream of exploring Africa at her father's side is fulfilled. Maxwell uses language beautifully: creating a setting for 1905; using the words [of the time] a woman of good family, champing at the restrictive bits of being a woman, would use to express her frustration; and, digging into Jane's thoughts as she discovers the freedom of being wild in an unEnglish jungle, freedom from the restrictions of her mother and her society, and the freedom of learning what is important to her as a person. It's an adventurous blend of H. Rider Haggard, Robinson Crusoe , Burroughs, history, and a scientific journal as we settle into Jane's head and take this journey into her time period and her adventures.
Using Burroughs in the prologue and the epilogue was brilliant and gave the story a great sense of reality. Maxwell's starting with the scene in the anatomy lab with the hassle Jane receives from her fellow student was very useful in setting the time's attitudes towards women. Maxwell handled Tarzan's re-learning English very well and the slow reveal on Tarzan's history as a child. It's another instance of bullying being tolerated and all the people it affects. The destruction. The waste! . . .
5/5 STARS: Creative tale with a strong female protagonist
By LynSue, February 26, 2013
I thoroughly enjoyed Jane: The Woman Who Loved Tarzan. Jane is not a woman of her times; she is strong, curious and an independent thinker. Robin Maxwell's character is dynamic and believable. Her novel combined aspects of realism with a twist of creativity. Having an interest in anthropology and animal behaviors, I found this tale quite absorbing. Maxwell's descriptive skills are magnificent.
4/5 STARS: Should be made into a MOVIE!
By WOB, February 20, 2013
Robin Maxwell has outdone herself in my opinion, by creating a great book from a wonderful legend that many of us grew up with. I haven't enjoyed such a good, strong female role like this since "Clan of the Cave Bear." "Jane" is a very well written, exciting adventure told from a mature woman's eyes, that almost any reader will thoroughly enjoy. I must admit that the last half of the book seems a bit rushed, and could have perhaps been a separate book in itself, but you sure won't be bored reading it! It is well researched, and a lot of fun. I sure hope that it can someday become a great movie so it reaches a wider audience!
5/5 STARS: Outstanding
By Wayne Saindon, February 18, 2013
I was very excited to read about one of my favorite characters as seen from the point of view of the woman in his life. This would be great if there were sequels.
5/5 STARS: Jane
By Barbara J Vogt, February 3, 2013
Author does excellent in presenting a realistic view of how the ape-man would have viewed modern civilization, and how Jane would have adapted to life in the wild.
5/5 STARS: Jane - A well written book
By William S Ashton, January 29, 2013
Jane: The Woman Who Loved Tarzan is a well written book. The author manages to write in the style, timbre, speed, and language of Edgar Rice Burroughs. I've never really known of another author who accomplishes this so well. The story line answers many questions of how Tarzan transitioned from being raised by humans to being raised by an ape mother; and the fate of his real parents. A good read.
5/5 STARS: Good Story
By Courageous, January 26, 2013
Good story if not a bit inappropriate. I really liked the characterization and feel that the book was worth the read.
5/5 STARS: Better Than I Imagined
By Michael Coote "voyager" (Hollywood, FL), January 23, 2013
I purchased this book thinking it was going to be another Tarzan ripoff. I was so wrong. The author took the topic to a whole new level. As I read it I was comparing it to ERB "Tarzan of the Apes", but by the time I got to the end, everything I thought was wrong made sense. I highly recommend this title.
5/5 STARS: Loved it!...
By Possibility (Connecticut), January 14, 2013
I grew up with Tarzan, I watched all the movies (my favorite "Tarzan" was and always will be Johnny Weissmuller) and read all the comic books I could lay my hands on, but I never read one of Edgar Rice Burrough's novels. As a kid, growing up in France, I didn't think of it and as an adult, I was afraid I would find them too corny which would have spoiled the wonderful effect Tarzan always had on me.
The last time I was in a book store, I came across "Jane, the Woman who Loved Tarzan" and looked for the audio book version at my library. I just finished listening to it today. Verdict: I loved it! It was wonderfully adventurous, with a smart Jane and a dashingly handsome, smart, yet still mysterious Tarzan. The 1984 movie version with Christopher Lambert covered a lot of the ground explored in this novel, but Robin Maxwell added some information that I was missing since I've never read Burrough. The romance between Jane and Tarzan was tastefully handled, sufficiently erotic without being intrusive (we are not privy to every intimate detail). The evolution and transformation of Jane from Jane Porter to Tarzan's woman was satisfying and the ending left me wanting more. I hope there will be a sequel. On the whole, this was a very pleasant read, nothing too intellectual, but nicely in keeping with the legend of Tarzan. Recommended.
5/5 STARS: Take the Ride of a Lifetime
By William D. Lamond (San Francisco, CA), January 7, 2013
I read "Jane" twice in one week! It was more fun than I've had with a book in years. Like our stories of Tarzan, there was plenty of adventure in this book to keep me turning pages, but there is also social commentary on the world of that time, the inner dialogue of a woman who was ahead of her time, faced with an alien world and real, honest-to-goodness emotion and spirit, as well as a profound psychological insight into the experience of trauma beyond what most people ever experience. I found it riveting.
I read a review or two by men who found it had too much emotion, inner dialog, etc. One man called Tarzan metrosexual. The truth of the matter for me is that I'm bored to death with endless male adventures that shoot 'em up, but have no human substance. The thrill of this book for me is that it included every part of a grand adventure, including the innner dialog.
I've been an adventurer all my life and have traveled to many amazing places, but it is always the inner experience of the outer adventure that makes the adventure memorable or not. In the end, it is not the actual deed itself, but the experience of that deed that is indelibly written on the mind and heart of human beings. This book rocks and I've already recommended it to many and posted it on FB.
5.0 out of 5 stars: Cool!
By Freya van Maasdijk, January 3, 2013
I've never read the original Tarzan work, but this book makes me want to for sure! Its clever, cool, and gives a greeat view on the personality of Jane. a must read!
5/5 STARS: Waiting for the Sequel, Robin!
More 2013 reviews will be added as the year progresses
A Few Reviews from Late 2012
By Karin F. Pine, December 28, 2012
You know how a really great book leaves you hungry for the next installment of ".... and THEN what happened?" Well, "Jane" both filled that hunger from earlier Tarzan tales... and generated quite an appetite for MORE Jane and Tarzan stories! Fabulous! I'm a big fan of Robin Maxwell's; I LOVE her Anne Boleyn books and some of the others... this one is a departure from the dark gloomy Olde England tales, takes us to a whole new world with incredible description. Tarzan, his jungle, Jane and the details of their story really take on dimensionality here!!
5/5 STARS: Robin Maxwell is BRILLIANT
By iAnahiem, December 26, 2012
Anything Maxwell writes, is brilliant. I really got into her when I read her Secret Diary of Anne Boleyn. Since then, I have tried to read as many of her books as possible. All of the books I have read by far are amazing! "Jane" was no exception, I think anyone who picks this book up will enjoy every aspect from beginning to end!
5/5 STARS: Closely resembles the work of Edgar Rice Burroughs--Great read!
By Steven S. Airheart (Live Oak, Tx), December 25, 2012
I am always on the lookout for something diffeerent to read, and this book did not disappoint. In the early 1960's I read nearly all of the original Tarzan books written by Edgar Rice Burroughs. These books were filled with interesting plots and sub plots, easily distinguishable heroes and villains, and fast paced, impossible to put down-styled writing. Robin Maxwell's "Jane: The Woman Who Loved Tarzan" is written in much the same style. Those who have read and enjoyed the Tarzan books are sure to be captivated by this book's fluid writing, descriptive and lush narrative, and its tender sense of sacrifice and loss. The mere fact that Maxwell tackled this story from Jane's point of view is enough to garner great interest in this book. A true original and well worth the time you might invest in reading it. I'm a bit surprised that this book did not have greater advance notice, but once word gets around "Jane: The Woman Who Loved Tarzan" will probably get the acclaim it deserves, and don't be surprised if Hollywood shows interest in a film version.
5/5 STARS: Enjoyable read
By Janet E. Eckhart "Jan in Jonesborough", August 16, 2012
I actually enjoyed reading this book--strong female lead and new perspective on the Tarzan stories I grew up with. I read this book in one evening. Once I started it, didn't want to put it down until done.
5/5 STARS: Jane of the Jungle
By L. M Young VINE™ VOICE on September 18, 2012
Jane Porter, uncensored! When a struggling pulp-novel writer meets an outspoken woman at an archaelogical presentation, he doesn't realize this will lead him to a tale so fantastic he can't even tell it in its original form. But even his own version is so mesmerizing it becomes immortal.
This is the story of Tarzan from Jane's point of view, and the struggling writer she tells the tale to is, of course, Edgar Rice Burroughs. Burroughs presumably retrofit the true story for his audience, as Maxwell's Jane is a far cry from Burroughs' prim lass who accompanies her father on a treasure-hunting expedition. Maxwell's Jane is an independent woman who studies medicine with the approval of her indulgent father, rides astride, and defies her tradition-bound mother, until the tall tales of a brash American explorer send them to "deepest darkest Africa." And there the alluring, charming American begins to change...or was he like that all along?
Okay, I enjoyed the heck out of this, but then I'm not a Tarzan devotee except for having seen some of the Weissmuller films and the 1960s television series. Those who are Burroughs series purists may not appreciate Maxwell's minor changes to Tarzan's life story, or her placement of Jane in the forefront, but it was enjoyable for me to see the Edwardian-idealized Jane as a strong character. The portrayal of early 20th-century Africa under the thumb of colonialism and the jungle scenes are quite vivid, and her Tarzan seemed much more approachable, especially as Jane learns his fantastic story. Authorized by the Burroughs estate.
Part II: The Naked Truth About Tarzan and Jane
Meet the Author: Robin Maxwell
JANE: The Woman Who Loved Tarzan ~ Book Excerpts
Tarzan Never Dies, Part I: 100 Years of Books and Movies
Tarzan Never Dies, Part II: Will There Ever Be A Great Tarzan Movie?
Jane: Queen of the Jungle
Edgar Rice Burroughs and Darwin Revisited: The Science of Jane
JANE: Reviews ~ Photos ~ Video
2013 Reader Reviews
John Carter Film News
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