Monday, October 19, 2009

ON BOOKS ~ Rebecca...

MizB asks you to:

  • Grab your current read.
  • Let the book fall open to a random page.
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page.
  • Share the title of the book the teaser comes from…that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!
  • Please avoid spoilers!

From pg. 259 of REBECCA by Daphne Du Maurier (fiction):

"I wondered how many people there were in the world who suffered, and continued to suffer, because they could not break out from their own web of shyness and reserve, and in their blindness and folly built up a great distorted wall in front of them that hid the truth. This was what I had done."

Bonus teaser...on Page 191 of my musty, 1956 hardcover copy of this book, someone had written in cursive with pencil the following personal note, which had nothing to do with the book but everything to do with the time when it was read:

"BUY - Lawson-Haggart Rockin' Band Bopping at the hop - Decca, L.P."

And that is why I love used books. But anyway, back to my thoughts on this book...

Having only seen the movie many moons ago I was pleased to give this classic a go and see how I found it. I didn't remember much of the plot - more the sense of the story than anything else. From the very beginning I felt like someone was narrating the movie in my mind as I read along. I could see Hitchcock's images playing in my head and was happy for it.

The book starts off very descriptive of the scenery which may have bogged me down a bit had I not already had all of the images flooding in from my movie memory. There is certainly a detailed scene set within the pages so that you can feel the ocean spray on your face, smell the fragrence of the spring flowers blooming throughout the grounds and feel the tingles on the back of your neck whenever a certain Mrs. Danvers appears around the corners of the Manderley estate.

A naive, plain young dreamer with an active imagination is rescued from her unpleasant job and life by an older, suave and rich gentleman trying to forget his wife's tragic demise within the past year. This bout of puppy love leads to an unexpected and sudden marriage and then she is whisked away to the famous Manderley estate to be installed as the new Mrs. De Winter.

Unprepared, alone and timid our narrator arrives and tries to make sense of her new life and find her way, all the while living with the constant reminders and comparisons to the wife who's place she has taken - the beloved Rebecca.

Trouble ensues with lots of twists and turns. There is much foreshadowing by du Maurier but she holds her biggest surprises closest to her sleeve. Just when I thought I had figured out the way it would go, she made me look silly. I enjoyed the story and although the narrator and her husband at times frustrated me with their personalities, I know that they needed to be the way they were for this wonderful tale of suspense to succeed. And that it did. Now I need to go rent the movie and see the images come alive again.

If you have read Rebecca, stop by a discussion Sandy led in two parts this month - here and here.


Margot said...

It's been many years since I read Rebecca. Your post brought back some good memories.

Sandy Nawrot said...

Great job at succinctly summarizing! I know when I started reading it, I did not appreciate the first chapter - the descriptions of Manderley, the atmosphere. After I finished, I had to go back and re-read!

Jenny said...

Never heard of it...

and how do I end up on your blog? I see my link no where, yet google says you have me linked.

(Diane) Bibliophile By the Sea said...

Loved this teaser. I waited so long to read this book, and once I did, I wanted to start over again--loved it.

ds said...

Great teaser, excellent summary! It is a roller coaster of a book, isn't it. And the note written by the original owner? Priceless! That is precisely the fun of used books.

Unknown said...

I remember liking the movie. I'll have to give the book a try. Thanks for the review!

kayerj said...

I love this book and have read it several times. I had no idea there was a movie. I've got to see it now.

Wanda said...

Can't imagine that the political implication present in this teaser went unnoticed at the time. Defensive walls so easily erected, crumble ... but at what cost?

Your teaser is quite the thinker today, Molly! I know the movie but not the book.

Anonymous said...

I listened to this one a few years ago and liked it, but didn't love it. Very nice review :)