Uffda….where to start….I found myself at times so aggravated with this book that I wished nothing more to give it a hard throw against a solid brick wall….whilst at the same time, I really found myself enjoying the writing style of du Maurier. I had no problem walking away from the book for a day or two at a time…yet whilst reading it, I really did enjoy it. I’m not at all sure I’ve experienced this feeling before…I usually love and obsess about a book, hate it and am angered by it, or am bored and can’t be bothered by it….never before have I felt all of these things at once….
I can’t even begin to express my disbelief in how someone as spineless as the current Mrs. de Winter can exist in the *real* world. I understand she was young…I understand she was shy…..I understand she felt outclassed…I understand she lacked confidence….but damnit….she also lacked a fracking brain!!!! I can’t think of a single literary character (or a real live person for that matter) that I wished to take by the shoulders and shake until some resemblance of sense came upon her….
Here’s the thing…it was a great story….it was full of surprises (although throughout the entire novel I kept having feelings of deja vu…perhaps I read this as a teenager?)…although nothing that happened was a huge surprise, I did not guess all of the plot twists…and I surely did enjoy all of the twists….the last twenty percent of the novel had me where I simply could not put the book down….I was racing to get to the end to find out how it would all come together….
My discomfort came only with the *evil* housekeeper….I just felt the current Mrs de Winter took too much from her….It’s not that I wished the character was any nicer….or that Mrs de Winter was any less naive…I just thought the housekeeper could have been more…errrrrr…covert in her doings and still had the same effect…at times I found it almost comical that she was able to bully in such an open way with no repercussions….if she had been more sneaky in her ways, I would have found the current Mrs de Winter a more believable character….obviously, as often happens, I stand on a lone island with my views….as it’s very obvious that other’s did not have this same problem with the current Mrs. personality….
I will only add-on that the way this book ended was frightening….not because I was shocked…or wished it had ended any other way….but the ending….again….uffda!!!!! Mr de Winters talks of his wife growing up and loosing that youthful look of innocence….later, it is noted that she looks like she has grown up years in a space of hours….but by the end of this novel, I think perhaps she is no braver, more confident or has any more of spine that she showed at the beginning of the novel….in fact, I am more disappointed in her than ever….without giving too much away, there is simply no way to go into this…but damn, girl….get some gumption…..for all of her talk of no longer being intimidated or afraid…well…..screw that….she was no better at the end than the beginning….perhaps she was even worse…
Should you read this book? By all means, yes….there is a reason why this book has never been out of print….This book is over 70 years old, but it could have been written today….I’ve read classics before of course….but this might well go down as one of my favourites….regardless of my dismay for the current Mrs. de Winters….Daphne du Maurier sure can spin a tale….romance, suspense, mystery and more….UFFDA!!!!
Until next time…
Buy it now Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier