10 Nov 2017

Review – Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier

Title: Rebecca

Author: Daphne Du Maurier

Rating: 3/5 


Working as a lady's companion, the heroine of Rebecca learns her place. Her future looks bleak until, on a trip to the South of France, she meets Max de Winter, a handsome widower whose sudden proposal of marriage takes her by surprise. She accepts, but whisked from glamorous Monte Carlo to the ominous and brooding Manderley, the new Mrs de Winter finds Max a changed man. And the memory of his dead wife Rebecca is forever kept alive by the forbidding housekeeper, Mrs Danvers...

My Thoughts:

Let me just say it straight away: I didn’t care as much for Rebecca as I thought I would. I guess I had pretty high expectations, because everyone seems to adore this novel. Well, now I can say, not me. Certainly, it is a decent story with decent characters, hence I gave it three stars, but I didn’t feel the gothic atmosphere that was supposed to be there, therefore it doesn’t deserve a higher rating in my eyes.

Du Maurier’s writing is highly enjoyable, even the descriptive parts and that was what kept me reading. I also hoped that the ending would make up for what the book was lacking in the first half – I’d heard before there is a twist at the end – but unfortunately I figured out almost everything before the big ’enlightenment’.

The herorine was too naive and frankly dumb for my liking and I know it was necessary because of the nature of the storytelling and for plot reasons, but she made me roll my eyes so many times I’m lucky they didn’t start to hurt. She made stupid decisions and many times didn’t use her brain and was extremely timid on top of that.

Of course, she was a young thing and inexperienced, but despite that it’s hard to believe she didn’t have any natural instincts or some kind of inner alarm that would have told her it wasn’t the best idea to marry a man after two weeks of knowing him. I guess she’d never truly been loved, the poor thing.

Anyway, as I mentioned the writing was superb, the story good but not extraordinary and altogether my expectations for an unforgettable gothic novel were unfulfilled. Lesson: Never be sure that an overhyped book will affect you the same way it does everyone else. We are all different.

An additional message to you who are reading this: the fact that I didn’t adore Rebecca doesn’t mean you wouldn’t, so you might as well give it a try. It is a celebrated success after all.

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