Published by Hachette Digital, Inc. on 2013-12-17
Genres: Classics, Fiction, Gothic, Literary, Psychological, Romance, Suspense, Thrillers
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Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again . . .
The novel begins in Monte Carlo, where our heroine is swept off her feet by the dashing widower Maxim de Winter and his sudden proposal of marriage. Orphaned and working as a lady's maid, she can barely believe her luck. It is only when they arrive at his massive country estate that she realizes how large a shadow his late wife will cast over their lives--presenting her with a lingering evil that threatens to destroy their marriage from beyond the grave.
First published in 1938, this classic gothic novel is such a compelling read that it won the Anthony Award for Best Novel of the Century.
One of my top ten favorite opening lines is now, “Last night I dreamt of Manderley again“ these sparse words set a tone where I just know the language is going to be beautiful. Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier is a tale of gothic romance, without the creepster Heathcliff.
The characters are haunting. There is the second Mrs. DeWinter, Maxim, Mrs. Danvers, and of course, Rebecca. DW2 is a character who is unsure of herself, as she is thrown into a new life situation. I felt her actions and reactions were quite genuine. To be completely honest, I would most likely have done the same. Honestly, what female hasn’t compared herself to the dreaded ex? I thought Maxim was a creeper out for a trophy wife. Mrs. Danvers was terrifying, I just picture her as a wicked witch, LOL.
The plot twists in Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier are often described as being predictable in other reviews. Apparently, I am slow as I did not see many of the twists coming until well, the actual twist itself. However, I refused to look at spoilers or really look at reviews of Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier which I feel added to my suspense.
Aside from the action, I felt the language was extraordinary. Reading Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier was delicious. If you already know the destination of Rebecca, perhaps you should read it to appreciate the journey. The writing is eloquent, which is not something I am very used to. I drew out my reading of Rebecca because I wanted to savor the words, and you can only read a book for the first time once. I would love to revisit Rebecca someday. It is deserving of multiple readings. I feel there is so much to be studied and interpreted within the pages, such as female roles during the time period (late 1920s-1930s I’m guessing), looking at the story in terms of control and submissiveness, looking at this via cultural norms, and also as a study of class relations. I feel I could discuss this novel all day!
While reading Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier, I suggest you drink a peppermint patty. Peppermint Patties are one of my favorite drinks ever. To make one, you pour a glass of milk and chocolate syrup, put in a shot of Creme de Menthe and a shot of Peppermint Schnapps, stir and enjoy. You can also make one by replacing the milk and chocolate syrup with a mug of hot chocolate for the cold winter nights!