Title: My Cousin Rachel
Author: Daphne du Maurier
Page Count/Review Word Count: 322
I had high hopes for this after enjoying Rebecca, but I can’t help but feel as though du Maurier is a one trick pony after reading this. It was pretty much the same book, but without the successful execution, and that made it a bit of a slog from start to finish. With Rebecca, I couldn’t put it down. With this, I had to read 20 pages a night just to make sure that I picked it up, and even then it helped to put me to sleep.
Don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with the writing style. It’s more that the pacing is way off, to the point at which it’s hard to get interested in any of the characters because nothing seems to happen to them. There were a few great bits of prose, but they were interspersed with so much unnecessary drivel that instead of being the jewels in a crown, they were more like scraping up the crumbs from the bottom of a bag of crisps.
I wanted to love this one, and I went into it just assuming that I would do. After reading it, I’m hesitant to give du Maurier another go, although I do have Frenchman’s Creek and I enjoyed some of her short stories. This one, though, was a big disappointment, and it felt a bit like going to see a one hit wonder in concert and discovering that other than their one hit, they just play covers and sound like a pub band. Maybe my expectations were too high.
All in all, I say skip this one, especially if you’ve read du Maurier before and you weren’t too keen on her. I just hope this wasn’t her at her best because if it is, it doesn’t bode well for her others.