Sunday, August 9, 2009

Review: Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier

"I had not realized how closely the trees grew together here, their roots stretching across the paths like tendrils ready to trip one. They ought to clear all this, I thought as I ran, catching my breath. Maxim should get the men on to it. There is not sense or beauty to this undergrowth. That tangle of shrubs there should be cut down to bring light to the path. It was dark, much too dark."

I'm a little bit better read today than I was yesterday! Why? Because I finally read Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier for the 1% Well Read Challenge. Well and also because I was wanting to read it for like, ever.

I loved it! I loved it so much that I essentially read it in one sitting. But that doesn't tell you much, really, does it?

Rebecca is the story of an unnamed girl...really her name is not Rebecca. Rebecca is the sort of ghost that haunts the whole story and everyone's life and screws everything all up. Anyway, unnamed girl marries a man old enough to be her father after knowing him for just a few short weeks, and he whisks her off to Manderley, his big huge elegant estate. She loves it, but she's pretty darned convinced of two things: 1) Maxim (the husband) is still in love with his dead wife and 2) Rebecca (the dead wife) was perfect.

Really, this book is quite masterful in sweeping you up into the emotions of the protagonist. As surely as she can, we can feel the spirit of Rebecca haunting everyone's lives. I don't mean that in a literal sense, there is no actual ghost, it's the memory of her that is so strong. It's hard not to feel unnamed girl's jealousy, her desperation, her insecurity. Even so, though, we are given enough to know that maybe not everything is as it seems. Fragments of truth shine through the self-deception that has so masked unnamed girl's eyes.

Anyway, I loved the book! It's a delightful exploration of self, perception, and truth. It's beautifully written and though once or twice it felt too long, I felt such affection for the characters, that I didn't mind. If you are lucky enough to have fall in your area or rainy days it's the absolute perfect book for that kind of weather!

Rating: 4.5/5
Source of Book: Bought at the bargain shop!




Amy

31 comments:

J.T. Oldfield said...

Some day I'll get to reading this and wonder why it took me so long, I'm sure. :)

Tricia said...

I loved this book in high school and recently bought it to reread. Your review makes me even more excited!

Ti said...

One of my fave books of all time.

Rhiannon Hart said...

This is such a beautiful book, and I only realised yesterday when doing a quiz that the protagonist remains unnamed! My favourite scene is when the beastly servant shows her into the morning room and says "This is where Rebecca wrote her letters," and the newly married girl sits down and realises she has no one to write too. Gets me right through the heart!

I haven't read Jamaica Inn yet, Du Maurier's most acclaimed (I believe) work, but I did love Frenchman's Creek. It's all pirates and stuff, but not in a corny and bodice-ripping way!

GreenBeanTeenQueen said...

I need to read this one. We watched the movie in my high school freshman english class and I knew I had to read the book. Hopefully I'll get to it soon, because I'm sure I'd enjoy it.

Chris said...

This was such an amazing book! I really want to reread this one all over again...may just do that for the RIP challenge again this year!

Sandy Nawrot said...

I've been wanting to read this for forever as well. I also have My Cousin Rachel by the same author sitting on my shelves, and I am praying that my random reading challenge will land on it so I can have the excuse to push aside everything else and read it!

Meghan said...

I love Rebecca! For me it has improved on every reread. I'm so glad you loved it too!

Nymeth said...

yay, I'm so glad you loved it too!

Alaine - Queen of Happy Endings said...

I just got this one on the weekend. Great review, makes me want to read it straight away!

Julie P. said...

I definitely want to read this one too. I've actually bought it two times already!

Susan B. Evans said...

Rebecca is on my list for the 1% well-read challenge this year, too! It looks really good. Thanks for the review :)

Jennsbookshelf said...

I've owned this book FOREVER..I really need to bump it up on my TBR list. Your review has reinvigorated my interest in reading it!

Melanie said...

I read this book during middle school, and I absolutely loved it! There's a sequel that's written by another author that I thought was really good. It's so weird that the girl goes unnamed, isn't it?

Kari said...

Ah, I read this in one sitting back in high school. Love it. I think I should read it again...guess it's going back on the TBR list!

samantha.1020 said...

I really, really enjoyed this book as well and plan on rereading it at some point. Glad to hear that you liked it so much too :)

Charley said...

This has been on my list for a while. I will take your suggestion and wait until a rainy fall day to read it.

Beth F said...

I loved this book. I've read it a few times but not recently. Now you have rekindled my interest. I wonder what it'd be like on audio?

So glad you liked it. Sometimes there's a reason books make it to one of those "must-read" lists.

Chris said...

Rebecca is in my top 10 faves! I love most of DuMaurier's stuff though. I have Jamaica Inn saved for the fall.

raych said...

Were you not SO SPOOKED! I was so spooked. DdM = teh awesome.

heidenkind said...

I think it does say a lot that you read it one sitting. I've never read Rebecca, but after reading The Birds by du Maurier, I definitely want to.

Melissa said...

I really need to read something by du Maurier. Great review!

S. Krishna said...

I absolutely loved this book as well. Great review!

Melody said...

I've this book in my pile! I guess I need to move it up after reading your review!!

ibeeeg said...

Great review!
I loved this book. It was different type of read for me. There is something about the mood of the book that stuck on me like glue from the beginning and kept me until the end.
I post my thoughts on my blog last week or so.

Rebecca :) said...

I haven't read this one yet. For a long time I had something against books with my name. I think it is because I was forever being called Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farms. Now that that has all passed, it it is time to read this book already!

Jenny Girl said...

I read this in H.S. so I;m long overdue on a re-read. Good review!

Jen said...

This one has been on my to-be-read list for such a long time. I really need to read it. Do you think it would make a good book club pick?

SuziQoregon said...

I finally read this because of The Summer of Hitchcock. Loved it! I definitely want to read more of DuMaurier's work.

Thanks for the kick in the behind to finally get around to reading this and I'm glad you enjoyed it as much as I did.

Kristina said...

I've been wanting to read this too! I've had it on my shelf for years!!

Melissa - Shhh I'm Reading said...

I really want to read this one! It's been sitting on my shelves forever and I just haven't made the time for it. Now I'm inspired to hunt down my copy.

Post a Comment

Thank you for taking the time to comment! I appreciate hearing your thoughts.