My new supernatural Victorian gothic novel John Eyre will be out on July 20, 2021. To celebrate its release, I’m embarking on an epic virtual book tour, complete with reviews, exclusive excerpts, and interviews. There’s also a Reader FAQ, spoilers, a Pinterest board with images of how I imagine the characters, and other special treats!
John Eyre is a dual timeline, partially epistolary, partially gender-flipped retelling of Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre (and one other classic novel I can’t reveal without spoiling the story). It’s my first effort at a retelling. It’s also my first novel with elements of horror.
I hope you’ll all enjoy it! And if you don’t—or if you’d rather skip this one—please know that regular programming will resume with my next Victorian romance The Siren of Sussex, coming Jan. 11, 2022 from Berkley / Penguin Random House.
“In this thrilling remix of Charlotte Brontë’s work, Matthews skillfully transforms a well-known story into a truly original tale.” -Kirkus Reviews
“Bertha Mason Rochester shines, dominating her scenes with vitality and strength. The style, too, is spot-on, reprising the spirit of 19th-century Gothic prose without descending into mimicry.” -Publishers Weekly
“Reader, I loved it.” -Austenprose
“[Matthews] retells Charlotte Bronte’s classic story in a way that will keep fans of the original novel totally gripped from cover to cover… Fresh and dynamic… Fast-paced and spellbinding…a book you will have a hard time putting down.” -Readers Favorite
“Matthews’ writing style is flawless… A thrilling, spooky ride filled with heart-stopping suspense—I couldn’t put it down! Highly recommended!” -Syrie James, USA Today bestselling author of The Secret Diaries of Charlotte Brontë and Dracula, My Love
“[A] captivating and ingenious retelling of Jane Eyre with a supernatural twist. Smart, suspenseful, and deliciously spooky, JOHN EYRE is a must-read; I loved everything about it! -Ashley Weaver, author of the Amory Ames Mysteries and the Electra McDonnell series
“One of the most moving, suspenseful, innovative and remarkable retellings of a classic in the history of, well, ever… Every page is sheer rapture as [Matthews] moulds popular source material into a spell-binding creation so wholly her own.” -Rachel McMillan, author of The London Restoration
“A wonderful sinister atmosphere, deliciously creepy characters, and a female character who is a powerful force… A true homage to the gothic genre without being derivative… Highly, highly recommended!” -Clarissa Harwood, author of Impossible Saints
Blog Tour Schedule
July 12 The Caffeinated Bibliophile (review)
July 12 Syrie James (review)
July 12 Austenprose—A Jane Austen Blog (review)
July 13 Bronte Blog (interview)
July 13 Laura’s Reviews (review)
July 14 Gwendalyn’s Books (review)
July 14 Austenesque Reviews (review)
July 15 Bookworm Lisa (review)
July 15 Nurse Bookie (review)
July 16 Savvy Verse and Wit (excerpt)
July 16 The Lit Bitch (review)
July 17 My Bookish Bliss (review)
July 17 From the TBR Pile (spotlight)
July 18 Rosanne E. Lortz (review)
July 18 Books, Teacups, & Reviews (review)
July 19 The Secret Victorianist (review)
July 19 Christian Chick’s Thoughts (review)
July 19 The Gothic Library (review)
July 20 Getting Your Read On (review)
July 20 The Silver Petticoat Review (review)
July 20 Lu Reviews Books (review)
July 21 Scuffed Slippers and Wormy Books (spotlight)
July 21 The Green Mockingbird (review)
July 22 Unabridged Chick (review)
July 22 A Darn Good Read (review)
July 23 Kathleen Flynn (review)
July 23 So Little Time… (review)
July 23 The Calico Critic (review)
July 24 The Bronte Babe (review)
July 24 Probably at the Library (review)
July 24 Impressions in Ink (review)
July 25 From Pemberley to Milton (review)
July 25 Vesper’s Place (review)
July 25 Cup of Tea with that Book Please (review)
FAQ and Spoilers
Q: Is this just a gender-reversed Jane Eyre?
A: No. In fact, only five of the characters are gender-flipped, and they’re not merely opposite-sex versions of the original characters, but different characters altogether. For example, Lady Helen isn’t the Helen Burns from Brontë’s novel. She’s the very unhappy wife of an abusive country squire who looks to John to save her from her unfortunate situation.
Q: Is this a “clean” romance?
A: John Eyre isn’t really a romance at all, but more of a supernatural Victorian gothic, with elements of horror and suspense. But yes, it is clean. Even the scary bits aren’t too graphic (I hope!).
Q: What is the other classic novel that John Eyre was inspired by?
Q: Are there any content or trigger warnings?
Q: Why did you kill off SPOILER in the first chapter?
A Few Extra Goodies
If you’d like to see some of the visuals that inspired me while I was writing this story (including who I’d cast in each of the roles), you can click through to the Pinterest Board.
Want to learn more about the special way I wrote John Eyre–and the special person for whom I wrote it? I have a piece on that very subject, up this week at Women Writers, Women[‘s] Books!
If you purchase a copy of John Eyre (or any of my books!), please do stop by my Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram page and let me know so that I can thank you personally. And please don’t forget to leave a review at Goodreads and/or Amazon. I truly hope you all enjoy the story!