Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier

My Review

"Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again"

This has got to be one of the most famous quotes in literary history. Very rarely can an author draw you in within the first sentence, the first nine words! You read the first sentence and you are already thinking, what is Manderley? why is this person dreaming about it? does this person not go to Manderley any more? why not? And you simply cannot help but read on.

Rebecca is my favourite book of all time, and I have read it several times. One of the things that I really love about this particular book is that you can spot something different every time you read it. A running theme, a new fantastic description, a new character you didn't think about before and honestly, I don't think I will ever get bored of this book. 

The story is about a young woman who is a professional companion to an obnoxious American woman called Mrs Van Hopper. In Monte Carlo, they bump into a well known wealthy estate owner called Maxim De Winter. He is a year widowed and evidently travelling to try and cope with the grief of losing his stunning beautiful and charming wife Rebecca. The young woman falls in love with Maxim and they get married in a hurried ceremony and have a quick honeymoon. She then returns to Manderley (the house and estate) as the new Mrs De Winter. She is supposed to be the new mistress of Manderley but this is made incredibly difficult as it seems Rebecca's shadow is still hanging over everything. Even the house-keeper Mrs Danvers seems incredibly devoted to Rebecca's way of doing things and refuses to be at all welcoming to the new Mrs De Winter. 

Scandal and intrigue at every turn, this book will have you gripped, crying, outraged, and laughing. 
One of the most interesting things that I love about this book is that you never actually find out the main character's name. She often mentions that nobody ever manages to spell it right and that Maxim likes her name, but we never find it out. Is this some way of making her less important than Rebecca in this book? The whole theme of the book is geared towards Rebecca's love of winning and her controlling nature. This is just another way for Rebecca to win.

I will not reveal any spoilers in this particular review. The particular edition of the book that I have has a fore word in it, and there are spoilers a plenty in that so I recommend not reading it before you read the rest of the book. It will spoil the atmosphere for you.

If you haven't read this, read it. It will blow your mind. I can also highly recommend Du Maurier's other works such as My Cousin Rachel, Jamaica Inn and Frenchman's Creek, all of which are very good.

Hope you're all having a good weekend.

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  1. I loved this book, but I wanted to slap some sense into the narrator so many times!

  2. I want to read it- I've had it on my shelf for ages! I have, however, seen a TV adaptation of it, so the big twist is unfortunately already known to me! Sad times!

    1. You must read it! The book is so much more full of suspense than any of the tv adaptations!


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