DAPHNE DU MAURIER (1907-1989) was an English author and
playwright. Many of her works were adapted into films, including
the novels Rebecca and Jamaica Inn and the short
stories "The Birds" and "Don't Look Now."
LUCY HUGHES-HALLETT is an award-winning cultural historian and critic. She is the author of biographies of Cleopatra and Gabriele d'Annunzio and of Heroes: A History of Hero Worship. Former television critic for the Evening Standard, she has long been a regular contributor to the books section of The Sunday Times (London). She has judged a number of literary prizes and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. She lives in London.
Surely no audiobook collection should be without some version of this timeless classic, arguably the most famous and well-loved gothic novel of the 20th century, and this production would be an excellent choice. Read in wonderfully British cadences by Anna Massey, all the mysterious and oppressive nuances are made immediate and chilling. We even feel some sympathy for the absurdly timid and cowering heroine; it is, after all, easy to imagine feeling woefully inferior to the predecessor and desperately eager to please. Of course the story requires great leaps of credulity; imagine a new bride hearing her husband confessing to the cold-blooded killing of his first wife and disposing of her body, and him ultimately getting away with murder, all without turning a hair, glad only to find that he had not even loved the glorious Rebecca so they can live happily ever after. Not how you remember it? Forget the movie; it makes mincemeat of the actual tale. A wise seven-year-old once told me, "The book is always betterDit goes right into your head." This is a prime exampleDlisten again; it gets even better. Highly recommended.DHarriet Edwards, East Meadow P.L., NY Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
"One of the most influential novels of the twentieth century,
Rebecca has woven its way into the fabric of our culture
with all the troubling power of myth or dream." -Sarah
"Du Maurier is in a class by herself." -THE NEW YORK TIMES
"Excellent . . . Perfect . . . Mastery from surprise to surprise." -CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR
"Addictive and breathtaking. Its blending of melodrama and subtlety is ingenious. The Cornish setting never quite leaves the imagination." -THE INDEPENDENT
"This chilling, suspenseful tale is as fresh and readable as it was when it was first written." -THE DAILY TELEGRAPH