Jane: The Woman Who Loved Tarzan-

Jane: The Woman Who Loved Tarzan

Robin Maxwell

Tor, Sep 18 2012, $25.99

ISBN: 9780765333582

 

In 1912 Jane Porter gives a presentation at the Chicago Public Library.  After the not well received talk on the missing link, she meets wannabe writer Edgar Rice Burroughs.  He admits to her that he has written some minor pulp fiction.  In spite of his literary résumé, Jane agrees to tell him her story.

 

In 1905, the only female student female student in the Cambridge University medical program, Jane prefers cadavers to tea socials.  Her dream is to be a paleoanthropologist and her long term goal is proving Charles Darwin is right.  American Ral Conrath asks Jane and her father the scientist to join his expedition to West Africa to find the alleged white skinned ape.  In the Gabon jungle, Jane realizes that the leader is an avaricious treasure hunter.  When a leopard attacks Jane, the white skinned ape rescues her from the beast and helps her heal.  He calls himself Tarzan.

 

Jane is a terrific retelling of the Edwardian Era classic with much of the changes occurring to the heroine and the Waziri.  The storyline starts off slow as Jane is turned into a modern day feminist rather than a spirited Edwardian heroine; for instance her telling Burroughs personnel matters in her relationship with Tarzan seems doubtful as part of an otherwise deft metafiction premise.  However, once she and Tarzan meet, the biographical thriller soars into a great rendition of The Woman Who Loved Tarzan.

 

Harriet Klausner

 

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