9 September 2008

Forgotten Books: DON'T LOOK NOW - Daphne du Maurier

Another contribution to Pattinase's Friday's Forgotten Books theme.

I had quite a Daphne du Maurier (1907-989) year in 1975 when I began my little green book of titles. I was on a bus from Katmandhu to London for nearly 3 months of it, but there's a heap of du Maurier's altogether so perhaps I was carrying them with me.

The first listed is DON'T LOOK NOW.
John and Laura have come to Venice to try and escape the pain of their young daughter's death. But when they encounter two old women who claim to have second sight, they find that, instead of laying their ghosts to rest, they become caught up in a train of increasingly strange and violent events.

DON'T LOOK NOW is a novella (may have even been the title story of a book of short stories), a quick read, and you may remember the film with Julie Christie and Donald Sutherland. For me it was also the case of "recognisable" setting and I visited Venice twice that year.

For me it certainly was the beginning of a Daphne du Maurier reading binge.
THE PARASITES.
VANISHING CORNWALL.
JAMAICA INN.
THE PROGRESS OF JULIUS.
THE FLIGHT OF THE FALCON.
THE GLASS BLOWERS.
RULE BRITANNIA.
all in one year.
I also visited Jamaica Inn - in fact had a friend working there.

Daphne du Maurier was a prodigious writer over four decades, a writer of short stories rather than the novels. I was really into short stories in those days - the year before I had read the complete short stories of Somerset Maughan. I think perhaps they both signify a slightly "gothic" phase in my reading life.

Did you ever read du Maurier? Check the list at Fantastic Fiction and tell me which ones you remember best .

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

What a Great Page on Daphne du Maurier! I am a Great Fan of hers. I was fascinated with Rebecca when I read it as a teen or young adult. Then I have read The Parasites many times in my life. Each time I read it I have a different take on it. Different insights. Now I am thinking I should try more of her books. I love The Parasites. Would you be interested in discussing that book in a little more depth? I think that would be fun and interesting!
-Becky Andrus of South Lake Tahoe, Calif we could exchange emails

Jennifer said...

Wonderful blog. I just found you today so I started from the beginning of the year and have only made it to March. I keep taking notes. I've got quite a list going thanks to you. I work at a public library and still have tons of to be read books, however I love adding new title.

Kerrie said...

Thanks for your cxomments Becky. I haven't read The Parasites and can't see fitting it into my reading schedule any time soon, but if I come across it I'll remember your comments.

I'm glad you liked my blog Jennifer.

BooksPlease said...

Thanks for your comment on my post on Du Maurier. I think maybe I'm on a Du Maurier binge right now. I'd love to read them all. Of your list here I've only read Jamaica Inn and The Flight of the Falcon, so I've plenty to go for. I've highlighted on my post the ones that stand out in my mind.

I've been past Jamaica Inn quite a few times on our visits to Cornwall. It was so disappointing the last time we drove past because it is now so commercialised - you have to close your eyes to imagine how it used to be!

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