Okay, so I really tried with this one because when I first heard about this book, I was SO EXCITED. Okay? SO. EXCITED. JANE EYRE is one of my favorite works of classic literature and when I found out that it was going to have Ethiopian elements, I may have screamed. I campaigned so hard for an ARC and DID NOT GET ONE, so I waited like the good book peasant I am for the chance to get a copy with coin.
FINALLY that day came and I tore into this book... only to be, uh, disappointed? The world-building felt really flat for me, like this could have been interchangeable with half a dozen other YAs. I liked that the heroine was plain and really passionate about her job, but those are the only really notable things about her. Our girl has NO HOBBIES and one of her favorite activities is pooping (I am not kidding). What in Galahad is going on here? (And don't even get me started on her "creative" method of ersatz tampon substitution.)
I'm afraid I am going to have to call it quitsies on WITHIN THESE WICKED WALLS. The writing was fine and some of the scenes of the evil spirits haunting the house genuinely gave me chills, but the bland protagonist and even blander romance really turned me off of this book. A lot of really popular reviewers swear by it, so maybe you'll like it too, but I definitely recommend checking out the sample first to make sure that the writing style-- and the narrator-- are to your taste.
2 to 2.5 out of 5 stars