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Old 09-12-2014, 06:45 PM   #1
Loosheesh
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Daphne du Maurier: which one should I start with?

Any fans of Daphne du Maurier here? I own 15 of her books but have yet to read one; please recommend which one of these (from the list below) I should start with:
  1. Frenchman's Creek
  2. Hungry Hill
  3. Jamaica Inn
  4. Julius
  5. Mary Anne
  6. My Cousin Rachel
  7. Rebecca
  8. The Birds and Other Stories
  9. The Breaking Point: Short Stories
  10. The Doll: Short Stories
  11. The Flight of the Falcon
  12. The Glass Blowers
  13. The House on the Strand
  14. The King's General
  15. The Loving Spirit
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Old 09-12-2014, 06:55 PM   #2
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From your list, the best IMHO are Rebecca, Jamaica Inn, Hungry Hill and Julius.
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Old 09-12-2014, 07:37 PM   #3
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Rebecca and My Cousin Rachel.
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Old 09-12-2014, 07:39 PM   #4
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The Birds and Other Stories - basis for Hitchcock's movie ....

Rebecca, Jamaica Inn, My Cousin Rachel
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Old 09-12-2014, 08:46 PM   #5
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I was so excited when they finally released ebook versions! I recommend starting with Rebecca and Jamaica Inn. Happy reading! I hope you enjoy them.
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Old 09-12-2014, 08:49 PM   #6
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I've never read her but I have seen the movie version of Rebecca.
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Old 09-13-2014, 05:09 AM   #7
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Mary Anne and The Glass Blowers are non-fiction to the extent that they are about real people. Mary Anne was one of her ancestors and was the mistress of the Duke of York (who had 10,000 men etc). A very interesting woman! The other book is about some of her French ancestors during the time of the French Revolution. So you might want to leave those two until you have read her fiction. The King's General is also about a real person, but is fiction.

I agree with others: Rebecca, My Cousin Rachel, her short stories which I think are very good and rather nasty, and I would add The Flight of the Falcon and The House on the Strand. These last two are some of her last books, and I remember them as being particularly good.
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Old 09-13-2014, 02:39 PM   #8
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to everyone for your help!

Five is my usual saturation point for prolonged reading of an author or series, so, from your recommendations, I came up with this order for the first five books:
  1. Rebecca
  2. Jamaica Inn
  3. My Cousin Rachel
  4. Julius
  5. The Birds and Other Stories

(I vaguely remember seeing The Birds (the Alfred Hitchcock movie) as a child; don't remember much except there were lots and lots of birds and I was scared silly )

I'm already 6 chapters into Rebecca and, though I haven't stepped into Manderley yet (that's in the next chapter, yay!), the sense of place is amazing.

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Mary Anne and The Glass Blowers are non-fiction to the extent that they are about real people. Mary Anne was one of her ancestors and was the mistress of the Duke of York (who had 10,000 men etc). A very interesting woman! The other book is about some of her French ancestors during the time of the French Revolution. So you might want to leave those two until you have read her fiction. The King's General is also about a real person, but is fiction.
I didn't know that! Thanks for the heads-up. I plan to divide up the books in batches of five (with one set of short stories for each batch), and I think I'll leave these for the last batch.
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Old 09-16-2014, 10:14 PM   #9
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I vote for Rebecca and Jamaica Inn. Favorites!
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Old 09-20-2014, 09:55 PM   #10
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I vote for Rebecca and Jamaica Inn. Favorites!
I completed both of these this week and they were great! She is so frigging awesome at creating an atmosphere/mood that just sucks you in. I've started My Cousin Rachel and the same thing is happening already. I may have hit a little reading goldmine here
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Old 09-20-2014, 09:59 PM   #11
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Great! Glad you liked them. She is one of the authors that I enjoy re-reading her books.
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Old 09-21-2014, 02:17 AM   #12
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Great! Glad you liked them. She is one of the authors that I enjoy re-reading her books.
Yes, same here - a very good writer and really interesting plots. Unlike so many writers, she doesn't keep writing the same basic plot over and over - her books are very different from each other.
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Old 10-04-2014, 09:38 PM   #13
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I reached a third way into My Cousin Rachel and haven't been able to move on yet. Nothing wrong with the book; I was going great but didn't want to rush so I put it down for other stuff and haven't been able to pick it up again (of course, now I need to be in the right frame of mind before I continue on ).

Anyway, I'm now in the mood for short stories, and tonight I figure why not screw up my reading order and jump to the short story collection (The Birds and Other Stories). So, as a toe-dip, I decide to read The Old Man (because it's the shortest story in the collection ); well, I'm reading and getting all worked up and then ... then, I reach the end. Those of you who have read The Old Man will understand why I had to turn back right away and read the whole story again. So awesome
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Old 10-04-2014, 09:51 PM   #14
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Glad you liked it. I think her short stories are brilliant - and often very nasty indeed.
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Old 10-06-2014, 11:28 AM   #15
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So, as a toe-dip, I decide to read The Old Man (because it's the shortest story in the collection ); well, I'm reading and getting all worked up and then ... then, I reach the end. Those of you who have read The Old Man will understand why I had to turn back right away and read the whole story again. So awesome
The Old Man is one of my favorite short stories of all time.

eP
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