I recently finished reading “Rebecca” by Daphne du Maurier, as it was recommended by my English teacher. I know it’s not a new release, but I wanted to talk about it with you all anyway.
So, for those of you who don’t know anything about the story, “Rebecca” isn’t actually about Rebecca. Well it is, but Rebecca is already dead, and has been for about one year. The protagonist remains nameless, until she marries Maxim de Winter, and becomes Mrs de Winter. We never actually find out her first name. Rebecca was Maxim’s first wife, and she died in a boat accident and drowned, or so we are led to believe…
I knew what happened in the book before I read it, so the “ultimate reveal” wasn’t quite so ultimate for me, but it was still a good book. There were things I wasn’t expecting, which is the type of thing I like in a book. I don’t like it always sticking to the conventions of a typical book of whatever genre said book has been put into. With “Rebecca”, it was similar. It’s technically a “Gothic Romance” novel, but there is also an element of crime, mystery and tension, especially towards the end.
For most of the book, I enjoyed listening to the protagonist’s story, but there were possibly too many times when she really just annoyed me. I already said I knew what happened before I read “Rebecca”, and I’m not sure if this is why I got annoyed with her, but there were times when the answers to her questions were so blatantly obvious, it was like she was basically being given the answers. She just didn’t think about it enough to ask more questions.
The second thing that kind of got on my nerves was that there were times when du Maurier talked a little too much about things like nature, which I personally felt didn’t need to be there… I don’t know, maybe it’s just me, but I felt like it was just taking up space and I wanted to get to the drama. Having said this, the finalé was just… oh, my God I don’t think I’ve ever been more disappointed with an ending to a book (and I’ve read a lot of books). *SPOILER ALERT* Mr and Mrs de Winter come back from London and I think Manderley, their house, has been set on fire. But it doesn’t actually say it’s been set on fire, it’s been written incredibly ambiguously so I had to read it twice, go back to the opening chapter, research it online, to find that the house was on fire. And it just ends. We don’t find out who did it, or if anyone was inside, it’s just left open for the reader’s interpretation. Which is something I really don’t like, because when it comes to the ending of a novel, or anything, I like it to be resolved and not left open like that. It’s just annoying. *RANT AND SPOILER ALERT OVER*
I think “Rebecca” is in general a really good book. But it’s not perfect. Overall, I’d probably give it a 7.5 or 8/10, which isn’t bad. I would say that I’d read it again, which is a good thing because normally I tend to read a book once and leave it on my shelf for the rest of eternity. But I do actually recommend you to read “Rebecca” because then we can rant about the ending together and I won’t feel like I’m the only one!