Book Review: Looking for Jane by Heather Marshall

Looking for Jane

Check out Looking for Jane

Heather Marshall’s LOOKING FOR JANE is powerful and important.

A story of motherhood, a story of women, a story of our lack of choices and the fight to choose. The complexities of the women, their experiences, and the emotions portrayed in these pages always rang true.

Marshall doesn’t write in black and whites, but the world of greys we all live in, where moment to moment our feelings, our decisions, and our thoughts can shift and transform and merge; where seemingly ‘wrong’ choices are never so simple, but understandable and often justified. Being a woman in a world that for so long saw us as second-class citizens (and in some cases still does) is not an easy feat. But women are powerful, women are fighters, and it is our emotions, our tenderness, that although sometimes viewed as a weakness, is what makes us strong – LOOKING FOR JANE explores all of this.

It’s a story I’m sure I’ll be thinking about for weeks, from the details about homes for unmarried women I knew nothing about, to the details about back alley abortions I wished I’d known nothing about, to the fight for a woman’s right to choose, which I’d never really taken enough time to consider.

Clearly, Marshall is an excellent researcher. I often found myself wondering whether aspects of this novel were inspired by lived experience. The detail was so on point, the emotions, the scents, the texture: it all felt too real to simply be fiction. And based on the Author’s Note, it wasn’t, but rather what I imagine must have been months, if not years, of mining other women’s stories.

This novel of brave and determined women is a must-read that honours countless untold stories of a past that’s been too long-silenced, that in other countries still exists. Beautiful, heartbreaking, necessary, and memorable.
Also, be sure to read the Author’s Note at the end!

Thank you NetGalley and Simon & Schuster for this advanced reading copy.

Author’s Website:

LOOKING FOR JANE is currently available for preorder and releases March 1, 2022!

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