The beginning is kind of boring to get through, but once you get into her adult life it was a great page turner and one of the best Gothic love stories I have ever read. In fact, someone pointed out to me that her childhood dragging on and on helps you suffer with her and gives you a lot of sympathy for the character (Thanks Miriam!). Oddly enough, when I read this a second time before I saw the movie, I found the beginning went a lot faster. So you’ll have to judge for yourself if you like the pace, but either way the beginning is worth it.
The movie adaption of Jane Eyre by Focus Features was very well done and I really liked it. They were especially faithful to the characters. A few of my favorite scenes got left out, but I liked the characters so much I forgave them. The Gothic themes in the novel were played up as well making it a little spicy.