Each chapter of The Eyre Affair opens with a small epigraph underneath the chapter title, all from a variety of inter-textual and extra-textual sources. Typically light, funny, or satirical, these epigraphs play and extremely important role in the form aspect ofThe Eyre Affair's content, and to the tone of the entire novel.
Thursday Next's Perspective
As a general rule of literature and life, point of view matters. The perspective from which a story is told can change everything that happens in said story. Since Thursday Next is not the exclusive first person narrator she originally seems to be, The Eyre Affair's content is complicated even further than we already knew it would be.
The Young Adult Novel
While reading The Eyre Affair, the fact that it was published originally as a young adult novel is something to be considered. In some ways, it allows Fforde to get away with breaking several rules of literature that usually deter members of a more mature audience of traditional readers (such as the distractingly inconsistent POV, the uncomfortably cliché dialogue, etc.), but the labeling of The Eyre Affair serves more purpose than a simple excuse.
The amount of overused lines, plot devices, and character constructs in The Eyre Affair equally balances out the never-before-heard-of bizarre elements in the book. Phrases such as “Love is like oxygen”(171) and “The first casualty of war is always truth”(200), and several more lines that can no longer be traced back to an original source because they’ve been quoted so many different times, litter the already-stocked narrative. In addition, along the way, we are introduced to such a wide range of stereotypes that cover just about everything, from female cops to evil corporations the size of (and named after) unbeatable giants.
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