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Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier

Rebecca (1938)

by Daphne du Maurier, Margaret Tarner (Retold by)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
13,766404152 (4.22)3 / 1401
  1. 304
    Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë (chrisharpe, fannyprice, ladybug74, HollyMS)
    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.
    HollyMS: 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. 182
    My Cousin Rachel by Daphne du Maurier (HollyMS, EllieH)
    HollyMS: Daphne Du Maurier's My Cousin Rachel has a similar theme as Rebecca.
  3. 143
    The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield (citygirl)
  4. 100
    Jamaica Inn by Daphne Du Maurier (katie4098)
  5. 90
    The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins (starfishian)
  6. 80
    The Scapegoat by Daphne Du Maurier (lois1)
  7. 60
    Lady Audley's Secret by Mary Elizabeth Braddon (kiwiflowa, lahochstetler)
  8. 50
    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. 72
    We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson (teelgee)
  11. 40
    Don't Look Now by Daphne Du Maurier (Z-Ryan, cometahalley)
  12. 51
    The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton (DaraBrooke)
  13. 84
    Mistress of Mellyn by Victoria Holt (kraaivrouw, FutureMrsJoshGroban, nu-bibliophile)
  14. 30
    Nine Coaches Waiting by Mary Stewart (nu-bibliophile)
  15. 31
    A Sucessora by Carolina Nabuco (HollyMS)
    HollyMS: 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
    Vera by Elizabeth von Arnim (bell7)
  19. 10
    Yes, My Darling Daughter by Margaret Leroy (WildMaggie)
  20. 00
    The Secrets Between Us by Louise Douglas (generalkala)

(see all 31 recommendations)

1930s (4)
To Read (299)

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English (389)  Spanish (4)  French (3)  German (3)  Italian (2)  Norwegian (1)  All (1)  Swedish (1)  All (404)
Showing 1-5 of 389 (next | show all)
I loved it. The sense of melancholy in the earlier pages sets the tone for the book. The prose is simple and exquisite.
The imagery of Manderley is vivid and beautiful. Richly described in elegant and free flowing prose.
The nameless narrator, naïve, insecure and anxious with her internal conflicts. She frequently finds herself going through hypothetical situations in her mind. She is endearing in her own way. Then there is Rebecca whose shadow hangs over everything. Rebecca with her slanting handwriting and long black hair.
The suspense is well crafted which held me captivated during the last part of the book.
Wonderful story telling.
( )
  kasyapa | Oct 9, 2017 |
This year's Classic....
I'll be honest from the start, I would never choose to read a Classic, I find them dated and slow, and rather pretentious. However, for some reason, book groups seem to feel a need to foist one on me every so often and their latest offering was Rebecca. "Oh no, you'll love it." they said. Oh no, I won't! Actually, 3 stars isn't bad a for a Classic, Lolita fared worse.

So, poor girl falls on her feet and marries rich man. Hardly an original premise. There was the nasty scheming housekeeper, who tricks poor girl into making a complete fool of herself. And the dead first wife who plays a huge part, even though she's dead.

I don't think I would have made it through all 400+ pages without the help of the very upper-crust, BBC voice of Anna Massey, but although she was a bit irritating, she was the perfect voice for the book.

But the ending - No! No, no, no!!! ( )
  DubaiReader | Sep 14, 2017 |
This book earns its "classic" ranking. ( )
  majesdane | Aug 8, 2017 |
The young unnamed lead in this novel meets, and soon after marries, Maxim de Winter after meeting him in Monte Carlo while working as a companion to an older lady. When he brings her back to his home in England, Manderley, she seems to be constantly compared to Maxim’s first wife, Rebecca.

Although it seems like not much happens in this book, or at least what does happen happens slowly, I still found it quite intriguing and interesting. I wanted to keep reading. I found I really like du Maurier’s writing style. I also found it interesting the way du Maurier would pick out little details to focus on. Knowing that Alfred Hitchcock had made this into a movie, the focus on these little details really made me think that this book would really suit his style, too. I really liked it. Though, I was quite disappointed that too much was given away in the intro to the 2003 edition that I read. ( )
  LibraryCin | Jul 30, 2017 |
This starts out so lush and winking and allusive and the psychology of it all is so apt, especially poor "Mouse," as my reading club dubbed her, the narrator, with her shining desire and her blind spots and her lust for safety and fascination with the twisted and fearsome, that I have to admit to some disappointment as we declined from keen psychological glimpses and hints through the series of reveals that pull the curtain off the whole Gothic backstory and down into the downright lurid; you feel like you're reading a pulp novel without even meaning to, and I like to know. But much, perhaps most, of this is magnificent like a hand full of aces or a fist full of peacock feathers. I feel like I'd like to've seen the early part protracted (perhaps Maxim and Mouse have many adventures in Monte Carlo and on the way home, and we fall for her ingenuity and pluck and get more and more illly invested in his illly illuminated past, while we still think he's a Rochester and not a Heathcliff--and by the way, think of Rebecca as a Catherine for a minute and think about the pulsating polyphonic novel that's just below the surface here--again, partly why I'm let down to see her reduced to a kind of all-purpose malevolence, waiting to be picked up by grad students writing on psychopathy or borderline personality in literature) and the latter part, especially when it gets down to goddamn police procedural basically, compacted. No but this book is great: it will haunt you if you have the right wounds for it to gain purchase, and be one hell of a beach read otherwise. ( )
9 vote MeditationesMartini | Jul 11, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 389 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (134 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Maurier, Daphne duprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Tarner, MargaretRetold bymain 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.
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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Wikipedia in English (1)

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.

» see all 19 descriptions

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