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Jamaica Inn

3.84  ·  Rating Details  ·  16,698 Ratings  ·  1,282 Reviews
Her mother's dying request takes Mary Yellan on a sad journey across the bleak moorland of Cornwall to reach Jamaica Inn, the home of her Aunt Patience. With the coachman's warning echoing in her memory, Mary arrives at a dismal place to find Patience a changed woman, cowering from her overbearing husband, Joss Merlyn.

Affected by the Inn's brooding power, Mary is thwarted
Hardcover, 208 pages
Published 1947 by Victor Gollancz (first published 1935)
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Jenna Hi, Nitya. I think the book is perfectly suitable if you'd like to read it, as far as I can remember, there is no inappropriate content other than…moreHi, Nitya. I think the book is perfectly suitable if you'd like to read it, as far as I can remember, there is no inappropriate content other than some violence. Daphne du Maurier is one of my favorite authors, and I started reading her books when I was around your age so I think it's appropriate.(less)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Jason Koivu
This rancid mess is supposed to be a classic?! The attempt at 19th century prose falls flat..."like a dead thing." Good god. It has all the writerly skill of a romance novel, and a boring one at that.

With midnight-smuggling and murder lurking behind a thinly-veiled mystery, I expected "THRILLS and CHILLS!" from this story.

For its time, perhaps it was thrilling...NO!...No, I will not defend it. The "what's going on behind the scenes?!" tension is teased out to beyond caring and the characterizat
Catriona (LittleBookOwl)
Overall, I liked it, however I wasn't totally enthralled. I'm not sure what exactly was missing for me, but I wasn't able to really connect with the characters and the story. Still enjoyable, but wishing I didn't feel so detached while reading it.

First published in 1935, this haunting gothic tale of adventure begins when a brave, young Mary Yellan adheres to her mother's dying wish that she live with her fun-loving Aunt Patience, but upon arrival at the sinister looking and desolate JAMAICA INN, Mary finds her Aunt has turned into a gaunt nervous wreck of a person with a spirit destroyed by abuse and fear of her violent drunkard of a husband, Uncle Joss.

As the story evolves and darkness falls....bad things....evi

Nov 18, 2015 Jean rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
When I first read Daphne du Maurier's popular novel Jamaica Inn, I had no idea what "wreckers" meant. Some romantic idea connected with pirates, I thought. I knew of the real Jamaica Inn, a pub in the middle of Bodmin Moor. But the grim truth is that Daphne du Maurier was not writing an account about either pirates or ordinary smugglers, but a highly-coloured bloodthirsty tale about bands of men who existed around 1815, according to the novel 20 or 30 years after Cornish pirates had been eradica ...more
(4.5) A spooky, gothic tale perfect for a stormy October night. "Roads? Who spoke of roads? We go by the moor and the hills, and tread granite and heather as the Druids did before us." Why I have waited so many years to read more of Du Maurier's books I'll never know, but there are definitely more of hers in my immediate reading future!

It's early 19C in Southern Cornwall and Mary Yellen's dying mother asks her to sell the family farm and join her Aunt Patience and her husband at Jamaica Inn in
Apr 21, 2012 Werner rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of historical and Gothic fiction
Jamaica Inn is a real building which, as Du Maurier notes in her introductory note here, stood in her own time (and still does) on Cornwall's Bodmin Moor. The old inn caught the imagination of the young author, and she proceeded to spin a tale, envisioning it "as it might have been over a hundred and twenty years ago." (Since she wrote those words in 1935, that puts the setting of the novel somewhat before 1815; the date is never given in the text itself.) And what a tale it is, complete with sm ...more
Wonderfully dark and atmospheric and utterly suspenseful, Daphne du Maurier’s Jamaica Inn is a thrilling adventure of a novel! I wish I had picked up this book on a chilly, gray and dreary fall day so I could have curled up on the sofa next to the fire with a blanket and a cup of tea. That would have created the perfect environment for reading this one! Nevertheless, it was still a satisfying reading experience.

On her deathbed, Mary Yellan’s mother exacts a promise from her daughter – that she w
Sarah (Presto agitato)
Nobody does Gothic like Daphne du Maurier. A decrepit inn without guests, wild moors, sinister fogs, smugglers, shipwrecks, a dashing horse thief, an albino vicar, and a murder mystery - all of the ingredients are there when orphaned Mary Yellan arrives at Jamaica Inn to live with her aunt who is married to a threatening man with secrets to hide.


The plot may seem over-the-top, but du Maurier excels in this genre, carefully laying the groundwork for a creepy, foreboding atmosphere. Instead of g
Erin (Paperbackstash) *Proud Book Hoarder*

Now this author could write:

'And then I'll feel the thirst come on me and I'll soak. Soak for hours. It's power, and glory, and women, and the Kingdom of God, all rolled into one. I feel a king then, Mary. I feel I've got the strings of the world between my two fingers. It's heaven and hell. '

Daphne du Maurier has style. The woman has a way with words that is as enchanting as her story concepts themselves. She had a bravery in writing realistic characters who are flawed, shining gems. I was fir
Nov 18, 2008 Mandie rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: literature
I don't understand my reaction to this book.

I loved Rebecca, it was beautifully and thoughtfully written, but Jamaica Inn leaves me cold and it shouldn't. I really didn't want it to. It has all of the ingredients of a dark and exciting adventure and is populated by caricatures, larger than life and impossible to beleive in. The albino priest, the drunken landlord and his colourless wife...the smugglers, the cliches of the boggy more. No no no.
Admittedly it was a less mature novel than R
This was fantastic. I've never read anything by Daphne Du Maurier so I wasn't sure what to expect. Since six of my goodreads friend read it and liked it I was sure I would too since they've got good taste. But nothing prepared me for the suspense of the actual book.

It was so good and so nail-biting near the end that I wanted to peak. But because it was so good I didn't dare!

Mary Yellen has come to the moors of Jamaica Inn to one, fulfill her promise to her dead mother and two because she needs
Jul 05, 2007 Stephanie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: do you like 'Wuthering Heights'?
This is another really dark piece of literature, right up my alley. If you like 'Wuthering Heights', I promise you that you'll love this book. Don't let the purple cover and pink, script letters turn you off!

Poor Mary has no idea what she's getting in to when she goes to live with her aunt and uncle! This book has murder, smugglers, deception, and a quiet romantic thread. It had me from page 1!
Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews
Mary complied with her dying mother's wishes that she move in with her Aunt Patience. Little did Mary's mother know what that wish held for Mary.

Those wishes turned out to be very unpleasant for Mary. Mary had to endure her uncle's horribly mean disposition, his illegal activities, his mistreatment of Aunt Patience, and Mary's being pulled into it all.

Mary saw things at Jamaica Inn that she had never seen before. For one thing, this Inn never had any guests except for unsavory characters.

The set
Stacey (prettybooks)
This post is part of the 2015 Classics Challenge.

WHEN I Discovered This Classic
I read Rebecca in early 2012 and adored it, so it was about time to pick up another Daphne du Maurier! Virago got in touch to offer copies of Rebecca, Frenchman's Creek or Jamaica Inn as part of the blog tour to celebrate the new adult (left) and young adult (right) editions of the books.

WHY I Chose to Read It
I have already read and reviewed Rebecca . As for Frenchman's Creek , I don't know how I feel about pirates
I have to say, this book by Daphne du Maurier is a little underwhelming.

The writing is, as expected, gorgeous. Just like in Rebecca and My Cousin Rachel, it is very atmospheric. There is, no doubt, an air of Emily and Charlotte Bronte's style about it. Considering that I am a huge fan of both Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights, that's a big plus. Du Maurier is also very skillful at building suspense. A feeling of dread and foreboding is maintained throughout the novel making it an intense reading
Two and a half stars rounded up because the first half was terrific. Lots of sinister Cornish moors atmosphere. Dark, abusive characters. A spunky heroine. But then the story was spun out too long and too improbably. And Mary Yellin went from spunky to foolhardy. I found myself skimming to get to the end. I much preferred Daphne du Maurier's My Cousin Rachel and Rebecca. This just was not her best outing.

Content PG for domestic violence and very ugly murders.

-Mostly boring.

-Mary was a decent heroine for the most part. I liked how she remained relatively cool and level headed when faced with difficult/dangerous situations, her loyalty towards her abused aunt was great too. What was annoying about her though was how she fell for Jem (her abusive uncle's younger brother) after meeting him two times and kissing him once. She didn't even know him yet she acted like a lovesick tween. It was even more pathetic because Jem reminded her of her disgus
Jan 25, 2011 Diane rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Reluctantly, I must return this book to the library tomorrow. I LOVE Daphne Du Maurier, and must add this book to my collection. Jamaica Inn is a real place, in between Bodmin and Launceston (you can google it), and according to what Du Maurier writes in her note in the beginning of the book in 1935, this sinister, page-turner of a tale is how she imagined it might have been 120 years ago.

Du Maurier's writing is superb, in my opinion. For example, she writes about the "granite sky and a mizzlin
Mar 24, 2016 Lydia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
Daphne du Maurier certainly knows how to write a page-turner. I was so into this book.
Mar 25, 2016 Cher rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classic
4.5 stars - Incredible. I really loved it.

Needlessly, I had worried that the 2nd book I would read by Daphne du Maurier could only pale in comparison to Rebecca, but happily that was not the case. I recommend her writing to anyone intimidated by classics as the two I have read thus far by her have both been fast moving and captivating. This one was very atmospheric - loved the creepy gothic feel and the way she pulls you right down into the moors.

The new BBC series that aired in April 2014 look
Kirk Smith
Oct 13, 2015 Kirk Smith rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
To begin lets just say this is a dam fine Gothic Thriller. There is homage paid to the Brontes and Austens of the previous century, but du Maurier's style is simple pure Twentieth century. Nothing slows the action but by god the gloomy shadowy continuously drenched moors keep it restrained. A horrible tale with shipwreckers murderers rogues thieves and oh yes that nice albino Vicar in the shovel-bill hat. The object of affection one Mary Yellan, orphaned, moves to give aid to her aunt and must ...more
helen the bookowl
3.5/5 stars.
This was a very interesting and dark story which is what I was expecting from Daphne du Maurier, and the setting of the book was made to perfection: the foggy moors and the creepy Jamaica Inn. From the beginning I found myself enthralled in this setting and I was eager to continue on with my reading.
However, while this book contains a lot of the elements I love such as mystery, darkness and unreliable characters, I didn't feel like this book connected as much with me as Rebecca. I
Re-read December 2015

I'm a big fan of re-reading books. Some I read over and over because slipping into a favourite book's pages is both comforting and like visiting an old friend. With other books it can be interesting to see how my views change over time. Books I once hated I now love, but (tragically) sometimes books I loved I no longer like. It's fascinating to see my reactions to books change over time as I age, experience different things and so on. More often than not, those books I'm re-
Feb 01, 2010 kari rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2009
OMG, this book is so so so so so boring. If I had not been reading it for a book challenge, I'd have stopped this one after the first chapter. It is so wordy, so descriptive and every time the action starts to move along, Mary, the protagonist, has to think off on some tangent and imagine this and that while the plot stalls. Too much of the brook burbling or the rain mizzling or the blackness of the moors or the people are like the rocks. After the first description, I don't need to read it anot ...more
Apr 15, 2016 Naksed marked it as dnf  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: gothic, boring, cheesy
DNF at 77%. I am sorry. Really sorry. Tried the audio version but I couldn't focus when every single time, the male narrator used a ridiculous falsetto to speak the female protagonist's lines. Tried the regular book version, and no matter how I tried to focus, I was so bored out of my mind. The gothic element is laid on thick in this one, to the point of campiness. The pace is torturously slow. I plain lost interest.
Alex is The Romance Fox
Having just read a Mills & Boon book set in Cornwall, I wanted to read more books set there…and who better than Daphne Du Maurier’s stories!!! No one has written about Cornwall like she has. Some of my favorite books written by her are set in Cornwall…Rebecca, Frenchman’s Creek and of course Jamaica Inn.

Daphne du Maurier is one of those authors that I have a great love for. Ever since I read one of her books many many years ago, I have been captivated by her stories and can’t even remember h
Oct 06, 2015 Jules rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the second book I've read by Daphne du Maurier. I recently read Frenchman's Creek, which I loved. To be honest I expected Jamaica Inn to be similar, so I was quite shocked and surprised at how dark Jamaica Inn actually is. It's a somewhat sinister Gothic tale of death, murder, mystery, smuggling and love. It is also very descriptive, and easily drags you into a world of desolate moors, dark streets and creepy fogs *shiver*.
Dec 22, 2014 Lisa rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics
One of Du Maurier's earlier novels. Although her magic is there, it is unpolished. The setting is haunting yet the plot is slow and stodgy.
May 18, 2013 Ali rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What is it about tales of smugglers, wreakers and pirates that is so deliciously compelling? Even now, in a landlocked city in the 21st century, these kinds of tales are able to raise the hairs on the back of my neck. I can remember being utterly thrilled by the Kipling’s poem The Smugglers Song when I first came across it in primary school – it somehow had the same exciting quality about that those old tales of smugglers always have. Reading those lines now after all these years -it seems prett ...more
Andrea (Catsos Person) is a Compulsive eBook Hoarder
December 2014 Women's Literature Enthusiasts Group Read

I had some curiosity to read a book by the author of the great classic "Rebecca" but I doubt if I would have taken any time to indulge it.

The author did an outstanding job with creating word-pictures of the English moors and their Tors all of Cornwall. When ever the protagonist went outdoors for one of her rambling walks out on the moors, I felt as if I was experiencing the terrain just as she did.

DDuM also did an excellent job of creating
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If Daphne du Maurier had written only Rebecca, she would still be one of the great shapers of popular culture and the modern imagination. Few writers have created more magical and mysterious places than Jamaica Inn and Manderley, buildings invested with a rich character that gives them a memorable life of their own.

In many ways the life of Daphne du Maurier resembles that of a fairy tale. Born int
More about Daphne du Maurier...

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“Because I want to; because I must; because now and forever more this is where I belong to be.” 103 likes
“Dead men tell no tales, Mary.” 33 likes
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