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Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier

Rebecca (original 1938; edition 1962)

by Daphne du Maurier

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12,620372188 (4.22)3 / 1311
Authors:Daphne du Maurier
Info:Penguin (1962), Paperback, 376 pages
Collections:Your library, Favorites

Work details

Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier (1938)

Recently added byTheDenizen, grammarchick, ssimon2000, private library, jgodby, Juan-banjo, jackandvera
Legacy LibrariesAstrid Lindgren, Carl Sandburg
  1. 274
    Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë (chrisharpe, fannyprice, ladybug74, Hollerama)
    chrisharpe: There are some similarities between these two books: a young woman marries an older widower and moves to his mansion, where the marriage is challenged by the unearthly presence of the first wife.
    fannyprice: These two books reminded me a lot of each other but Rebecca was more modern and somewhat less preachy.
    Hollerama: Since Rebecca was published, observers have noticed that it has parallels to Jane Eyre. Both are dark stories about young women who marry wealthy Englishmen.
  2. 171
    My Cousin Rachel by Daphne du Maurier (Hollerama, EllieH)
    Hollerama: Daphne Du Maurier's My Cousin Rachel has a similar theme as Rebecca.
  3. 132
    The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield (citygirl)
  4. 100
    Jamaica Inn by Daphne du Maurier (katie4098)
  5. 80
    The Scapegoat by Daphne du Maurier (lois1)
  6. 81
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  7. 60
    Lady Audley's Secret by Mary Elizabeth Braddon (kiwiflowa, lahochstetler)
  8. 60
    Lorna Doone by R. D. Blackmore (Sylak)
    Sylak: Another saga set against a hauntingly beautiful landscape - but this time its in Exmoor.
  9. 50
    Thornyhold by Mary Stewart (whymaggiemay)
    whymaggiemay: Although I believe that du Maurier was the better writer, Thornyhold and many others by Mary Stewart give the same suspenseful feeling.
  10. 40
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  11. 62
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    Mistress of Mellyn by Victoria Holt (kraaivrouw, FutureMrsJoshGroban, nu-bibliophile)
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  14. 41
    The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton (DaraBrooke)
  15. 31
    A sucessora by Carolina Nabuco (Hollerama)
    Hollerama: When Rebecca came out, there were accusations that Daphne du Maurier had plagiarized A sucessora (The Sucessor) by Brazilian author Carolina Nabuco. Read it and decide for yourself.
  16. 20
    Freedom and Necessity by Steven Brust (bjappleg8)
    bjappleg8: first person narrative; ambiguous supernatural elements; slow unravelling of a mystery in a historical British setting
  17. 10
    Vanishing Cornwall by Daphne du Maurier (Z-Ryan)
  18. 10
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(see all 31 recommendations)

1930s (6)

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English (356)  Spanish (4)  French (3)  German (3)  Italian (2)  Norwegian (1)  Portuguese (Portugal) (1)  Swedish (1)  All languages (371)
Showing 1-5 of 356 (next | show all)
Review: Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier

The story starts out slow and passive but once the story begins to develop there’s no holding back, you must read on. The story contains all the elements of a great fiction classic, with the haunting past setting at the seaside in southwest England, and narrated by an unnamed character provides the gloomy backdrop for a suspenseful plot and unforgettable characters. Daphne Du Maurier makes no attempt to name the narrator anywhere throughout the book but the reader does realize that it is the new wife of Mr. De Winters, whose character is of a naïve, insecure, innocent, childlike young woman newly married to the much older, wealthy Maxim De Winter.

The story begins with this young woman as the narrator who earns her living as a paid companion to an obnoxious rich elderly woman. While on vacation under the rudeness and tackiness of her employer is when she meets the mysterious dark handsome widower Max De Winter. She is enlightened by him, goes for rides with him, and enjoys his company at dinner. Not much time goes by when he purposes marriage to her and she accepts over the advice from the elderly lady. After the plain uneventful marriage ceremony they went on a honeymoon in Italy. The new bride did enjoy her time there with her husband but when it was time Mr. De Winter took his bride home to his great home, Manderly, which she loved until she realized she was sharing the house and her husband with the ghost of the first wife.

At the great Manderly estate she saw another side of Maxim along with awkward situations with some of the staff employees especially Mrs. Danvers, the top housekeeper who was very close to the first Mrs. De Winter, Rebecca, who died in a boat accident a year before. Even now the new bride felt a great overwhelming presence of Rebecca. She felt like Maxim was always thinking about Rebecca, who everyone loved. The feelings she got was that she was always being compared to Rebecca. What unfolds between the new bride and Mrs. Danvers was shocking to the point of evil scenes throughout the story and Mrs. Danvers made it extremely known at the end of the book.

This was a great story with plenty of suspenseful/haunting scenes, and unexpected secrets/mystery in the crevices of the reefs in the cove below the Manderly estate. Daphne Du Maurier masterminded an unforgettable atmosphere of decomposing beauty, frightening mystical sensations and horror entwined with love and death.
( )
  Juan-banjo | May 31, 2016 |
Historic fiction.
Mysterious Manderley.
Rebecca is the name of the personality in this book, which constantly assaults our heroin (whose name we dont know). Our heroin is a young girl who meets a widower Max de Winter on a holiday and marries him. Max de Winter who was married to Rebecca also is haunted by the memories of his late wife which in turn effects our heroin who is young and new to a world like Manderley. ( )
  PallaviSharma | May 9, 2016 |
Stephen King based much of his novel "Bag of Bones" on this novel, which was written in the 1930s. I was surprised how much I liked it, especially given the fact that its cover makes it seem like a Harlequin Romance Novel. it's not; it's much better. ( )
  evamat72 | Mar 31, 2016 |
I had seen the Joan Fontaine/Laurence Olivier movie "Rebecca" several times before I finally picked up this book. I have always liked the movie but the relationship between Max and the narrator was always a little baffling. After reading the book, I felt I understook the characters and their relationships so much better. Having seen the movie, I figured I knew the ending of the book, but was pleasantly surprised how much more there was to the story. ( )
  mamashepp | Mar 29, 2016 |
I had seen the Joan Fontaine/Laurence Olivier movie "Rebecca" several times before I finally picked up this book. I have always liked the movie but the relationship between Max and the narrator was always a little baffling. After reading the book, I felt I understook the characters and their relationships so much better. Having seen the movie, I figured I knew the ending of the book, but was pleasantly surprised how much more there was to the story. ( )
  mamashepp | Mar 29, 2016 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Maurier, Daphne duprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Beauman, SallyIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Burnett, VirgilCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Massey, AnnaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Stibolt, HelenTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Vasara, HelviTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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First words
Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again.
'You see,' she said, snapping the top, and walking down the stairs, 'you are so very different from Rebecca.'
We came to Manderley in early May, arriving, so Maxim said, with the first swallows and the bluebells. It would be the best moment, before the full flush of summer, and in the valley the azaleas would be prodigal of scent and the blood-red rhododendrons in bloom.
Forget it, Mrs. de Winter, forget it, as he has done, thank heaven, and the rest of us. We none of us want to bring back the past, Maxim least of all. And it's up to you, you know, to lead us away from it. Not to take us back there again.
Frank knew, but Maxim did not know that he knew. And Frank did not want Maxim to know that he knew. And we all stood there, looking at one another, keeping up these little barriers between us.
If only there could be an invention that bottled up a memory, like scent. And it never faded, and it never got stale. And then, when one wanted it, the bottle could be uncorked, and it would be like living the moment all over again.
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Book description
"Last night I dreamed I went to Manderley again..."

So the second Mrs. Maxim de Winter remembered the chilling events that led her down the turning drive past the beeches, white and naked, to the isolated gray stone manse on the windswept Cornish coast. Working as a lady's companion, she 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 proprosal 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. 

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.
Haiku summary
Nameless narrator

marries wealthy widower;

haunting Rebecca.

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0380730405, Paperback)

With these words, the reader is ushered into an isolated gray stone mansion on the windswept Cornish coast, as the second Mrs. Maxim de Winter recalls the chilling events that transpired as she began her new life as the young bride of a husband she barely knew. For in every corner of every room were phantoms of a time dead but not forgotten—a past devotedly preserved by the sinister housekeeper, Mrs. Danvers: a suite immaculate and untouched, clothing laid out and ready to be worn, but not by any of the great house's current occupants. With an eerie presentiment of evil tightening her heart, the second Mrs. de Winter walked in the shadow of her mysterious predecessor, determined to uncover the darkest secrets and shattering truths about Maxim's first wife—the late and hauntingly beautiful Rebecca.

This special edition of Rebecca includes excerpts from Daphne du Maurier's The Rebecca Notebook and Other Memories, an essay on the real Manderley, du Maurier's original epilogue to the book, and more.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:09:11 -0400)

(see all 8 descriptions)

The second Mrs. Maxim de Winter finds it difficult and frightening to live in the shadow of her predecessor, a situation that is exacerbated by her husband's moodiness, and the presence of sinister housekeeper, Mrs. Danvers.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 21 descriptions

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