The bad people are all horrible and the pious people are all saintly. No one is even remotely in the grey-area. Mr Hargrave seems to get a bit of a personality transplant halfway through. Helen is almost insufferable. Her aunt gets proved right, despite having a despicable (even for the time) attitude towards her niece. Anne can't pull off the pious heroine in the same way that Charlotte did in Villette, she just makes her horrendous. And who the fuck is Gilbert, anyway? He's so boring as to be utterly lacking in impact.
The writing was pretty good, though.