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My Cousin Rachel Paperback – March 1, 2009
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From Library Journal
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"A taut, well, written story that will no doubt grab you attention and not let it go until the very last page. " - A Lovely Shore Breeze
" I think it's safe to say that I was haunted by this Gothic Tale long after I finished the book. Grade A." - Musings of a Bibliophile
"Do you have books that as soon as you finished reading them, you were sorry the story ended?... My Cousin Rachel by Daphne du Maurier was such a book for me." - Reading Extravaganza
"[I]t is hard to put this story down." - Bookloons.com
"[D]efinitely entertaining and suspenseful." - We Be Reading
"A classic manor mystery in the tradition of the Brontë sisters with a modern psychological twist, My Cousin Rachel is a fine introduction to the sort of refined madness that defines Daphne du Maurier's work. " - Hipster Book Club
"In 1951, du Maurier released My Cousin Rachel and this one is, thus far in our du Maurier reading journey, A Reader's Respite's favorite... another Sourcebook's reprint and boy, are we thankful." - A Reader's Respite
"The excellent world-building and use of symbolism created a brooding, mysterious atmosphere." - Genre Reviews
"I enjoyed reading My Cousin Rachel. It was intriguing and suspenseful." - Cindy's Love of Books
More About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
I'm a mystery writer, and Daphne du Maurier was one of my earliest inspirations. REBECCA is her masterpiece, followed by two other novels, THE SCAPEGOAT and this 1951 bestseller. The opening sentences of MY COUSIN RACHEL (above) are second only to the immortal opening line of REBECCA.
In 1840s Cornwall, young Philip Ashley inherits the fortune of the cousin who raised him, who has recently married abroad (Italy) and died under mysterious circumstances. Philip's pleasant life is disrupted by the sudden arrival of his cousin's beautiful widow, Rachel. Initially planning to send her on her way with a generous pension, he soon finds himself falling in love with her--even as he begins to suspect that she murdered his cousin and may be planning the same fate for him.
Rarely have I read a novel in which the tension and suspense arise almost exclusively from character. Who is this woman? What is she doing? How is the young hero going to respond to her? These questions have haunted readers since the book first appeared, and they will continue to do so for a long time to come. Reading the book again after all these years, I was amazed by du Maurier's plotting, her use of language, and the way she can create an atmosphere of foreboding that is almost palpable. Writers can learn a lot from this master, and RACHEL is a must for anyone who loves the very best in suspense.
PS: The 1952 film version, with Olivia de Havilland and an incredibly young Richard Burton in the leads, is also excellent.
The story is told by Philip Ashley, a young orphan who was taken in to raise by his cousin Ambrose, a young man not much more than a boy himself. And it was just the two of them for many years. No women around at all....not even on the staff. There was never a need, when the men could get along so well without them! When Ambrose's health starts to falter a bit, he is pushed to spend the cold, damp winters in a warmer climate. Imagine Philip's surprise when, one winter, Ambrose writes that he has married a woman from Florence! Her name was Rachel, a widow that was struggling to survive the debt her first husband had left. Not only was Philip surprised, he was jealous. Ambrose had always been his and his alone. He never had to share him with anyone.
When Ambrose decides to stay in Florence to help settle some estate problems for Rachel, Philip is upset. And when Ambrose's correspondence starts falling behind, he even starts to get worried. About this time a letter arrives for Philip that is shaky and completely unlike Ambrose. Philip quickly decides to make the trip to Florence. Ambrose complains of being sick and is having doubts about Rachel, his torment. But when Philip arrives at the villa in Italy, Ambrose has already passed away, and Rachel has left the country. With revenge on his mind, Philip goes back to England to find he will inherit the entire Ashley estate on his twenty-fifth birthday, which is only 6 months away. No provisions at all have been made for Rachel, Ambrose's widow.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
While enjoying the book very much, I was disappointed that it was so short. More like a novellete . It didn't thrall me as "Rebecca" did.Published 7 days ago by Amazon Customer
I stated "predictable" but meant that in the best sense, I expect what DuMurier always delivered. Surely we all remember Rebecca and the Scapegoat and Don't Look Now. Read morePublished 17 days ago by R. Kelly
Short read. If you are frustrated by young, naive characters, this one isn't the one for you. I love Daphne du Maurier, and I hate to give this a mediocre review.Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
This Daphne Du Maurier work is a true classic. If you want to learn to write from a master, My Cousin Rachel, Rebecca and Jamaica Inn are all well worth reading and will not... Read morePublished 1 month ago by CathyMcReader
My Cousin Rachel is a wonderful book - one of my favorites. It is NOT what you are buying here. This is a ridiculous abridgment of a classic. Read morePublished 1 month ago by LMorgan923
Excellent movie...first film of Richard Burton...what a talent! Very faithful to the book.Published 2 months ago by strangesmith
I liked the book better the first time I read it after it was published. It seems to be a short story today/Published 2 months ago by Connie M. Moody