5.0/5.0 (I’d give it more if I could)
This is what my copy looks like, a 1953 Cardinal edition that I picked up in Canada over 25 years ago when I was there on holiday. To date this is my most read book.
Originally written by Daphne Du Maurier in 1938 and selling millions of copies, this book has never been out of print. It possibly has the most famous character ever written with the house keeper Mrs Danvers whose name has been used in many novels to allude to a cruel twisted character. Since 1938 still no one knows the second Mrs De Winters christian name and it arguably has the most famous opening line.
‘Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again.’
As if that wasn’t enough intrigue, it’s a beautifully penned sinister gothic mystery story of jealous, real human emotions and the pains of growing up outside your comfort zone and the beliefs we build around ourselves allowing jealousy to eat away at our lives.
So the second Mrs. Maxim de Winter remembered the chilling events that led her down the turning drive past ther beeches, white and naked, to the isolated gray stone manse on the windswept Cornish coast. With a husband she barely knew, the young bride arrived at this immense estate, only to be inexorably drawn into the life of the first Mrs. de Winter, the beautiful Rebecca, dead but never forgotten…her suite of rooms never touched, her clothes ready to be worn, her servant — the sinister Mrs. Danvers — still loyal. And as an eerie presentiment of evil tightened around her heart, the second Mrs. de Winter began her search for the real fate of Rebecca…for the secrets of Manderley.
If you’ve never read this please treat yourself and get lost in this all consuming story. You’ll be glad you did. It must have something going for it, it’s still going after 78 years and yet it’s story is timeless.