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Mrs. Dewinter Mass Market Paperback – November 1, 1994

2.1 out of 5 stars 94 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

This sequel to Daphne du Maurier's Rebecca depicts the further adventures of Maxim de Winter and his second wife.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

What happened to Maxim de Winter and his second wife after Manderley burned? This suspenseful "completion" of Daphne du Maurier's Rebecca begins with the couple's return to England, following a ten-year, self-imposed exile, for the funeral of Maxim's sister Beatrice. In a voice true to the original story, Hill's Mrs. de Winter chronicles Rebecca's continuing shadow on their life: a mysterious wreath bearing a card with the initial "R" is discovered near Beatrice's grave, and unwelcome visitors include Jack Favell, who has visions of blackmail, and Mrs. Danvers, who seeks revenge. The narrator's happiness with Maxim is threatened by his first wife's invasive presence. Can she protect him from the past, or will Rebecca's murder be avenged? Sure to please du Maurier fans, this is highly recommended for public libraries. Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 6/15/93.
- Heather Blenkinsopp, Mercy Coll. Lib., Dobbs Ferry,
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Avon; Reprint edition (November 1, 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0380721457
  • ISBN-13: 978-0380721450
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 2.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (94 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,542,867 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on May 30, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I can't think of a single good thing to say about it. It reads like an entry to those one of the Worst Writing contests--it is so bad, it's like a parody of pointlessly melodrama. Mrs. De Winter spent nearly the entire book inside her own head, sharing her thoughts, fears, and aimless existence and it sounded just like this: "I think I knew at once, in an instant, things would never be the same again, they couldn't be the same, not now, not ever, I was a fool to think otherwise, oh WHY didn't I see, why COULDN'T I see, that things were different but forever the same, always the same, they couldn't be otherwise, I know that now, I think I knew that then, but until that instant I didn't believe, didn't want to believe, that for me, things were just as before, exactly as before, forever haunting us, forever coming between us, just as before, unchanged........." Bleah.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
My mother introduced me to Rebecca when I was twelve. I've adored the book ever since. I never wanted the book to end, and longed to know what happened to the characters after the tragic fire at Manderly. I was so excited to pick up Mrs. DeWinter. Two chapters into the book, I knew that I had made a dreadful mistake. I felt an obligation to finish the book, and I did. Ms. Hill causes readers to loathe Maxim, to think of him as a boorish lout. The second Mrs. DeWinter reads as flat, neurotic and weak. If I could erase this book from my memory I would. It is a disgrace to the original.
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Format: Paperback
The second Mrs. de Winter narrates this book, as she did Daphne du Maurier's classic REBECCA, to which it professes itself the sequel. She remains otherwise nameless, and through the first half of this novel sounds very much like herself. Author Hill has du Maurier's style down cold, in fact. In that respect I was very pleased.

The novel's second half, on the other hand, kept me reading almost solely for the beauty of the writing. As Maxim de Winter and his second wife make a permanent return to England, after 10 years in voluntary exile, the characters regress alarmingly and infuriatingly. Mrs. de Winter loses all the growth she attained during the first book's events, and during her years in exile. Maxim loses the wonderful complexity that made him such an intriguing hero. Was the point to get rid of the du Maurier book's moral ambiguity? If so, Hill accomplishes this quite nicely. She has her heroine tell us repeatedly that "we make our own destiny," and she sees to it that wrong is punished in proper black-and-white terms. By the time she's through, the characters who seemed so real precisely because they had as many dimensions as flesh-and-blood people have been rendered simple, manageable, understandable...and boring.

Competently written, but overall a huge disappointment.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
I couldn't wait for Mrs. De Winter to be available and was not only disappointed, but angered that it was allowed to be published. I have had the pleasure of reading Rebecca at least five times in the past twenty years and was always impressed with the main character's strength and maturity when she finally made her stand. In Mrs. De Winter, the author totally lost sight of this strength of character and expected the reader to accept a weak and frightened child bride again. For anyone who has read the original Rebecca, it is clear that this book (Mrs. De Winter) was published to make money on it's success. Shame on the publisher and the estate of Du Maurier for allowing this. Rebecca is probably one of the best gothic novels this century, it even is pivital in a fairly recent Ken Follett novel of the same title, Rebecca, which I thoroughly enjoyed.
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Format: Hardcover
The nameless narrator of Rebecca chronicles the downs of her marriage with Maxim DeWinter 10 years after the burning of Manderley. The couple have been abroad, leading a nomadic existence, fleeing old ghosts. But the nesting urge is strong in our heroine, and on a visit to England she takes a fancy to an unpretentious country estate. Then, to her chagrin, they're off again, to Istanbul, but for her birthday, Maxim surprises her with the deed to the estate. Back to England, where she potters around the garden and longingly imagines the children she hopes they'll have one day. When the blessed event/s fail to occur, she goes up to London to consult a doctor and there runs into the odious, now dissolute Jack Favell, who still has it in for Maxim.

The plot creaks along, becalmed by long stretches of interior monologue. Mrs. Danvers makes a wooden reappearance, Maxim never demonstrates one likeable, warm or witty moment, the heroine chickens out of multiple opportunities to show some backbone, and by the time tragedy comes at the end few readers will care.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
I don't understand why sequels to brilliant novels are written long after the original author's death. They all fail miserably, yet continue to get published. Mrs. DeWinter might very well be the worst of the lot, with no character development, no plot, and absolutely NO point. Nothing is resolved, except the solution of who burned down Manderley, which was better left unknown. Susan Hill rambles on and on about nothing. The book is extremely boring and way OVERLONG and took me weeks to finish. I was so glad to finally be able to put the book away. Fans of Rebecca should not waste their time reading this garbage. Nothing in the book makes sense, from the narrarator's actions to Mrs. Danvers living down the street, to why Maxim has become so annoying and childish. The last page is the only decent one in the book. Save your time and money, this book was better left never being written.
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