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The Doll: The Lost Short Stories
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The Doll: The Lost Short Stories

3.67  ·  Rating Details ·  1,548 Ratings  ·  207 Reviews
'I want to know if men realise when they are insane. Sometimes I think that my brain cannot hold together, it is filled with too much horror - too much despair ... I cannot sleep, I cannot close my eyes without seeing his damned face. If only it had been a dream.'

In 'The Doll', a waterlogged notebook is washed ashore. Its pages tell a dark story of obsession and jealousy.
Hardcover, Book Club, 207 pages
Published 2011 by Harper
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Petra Eggs
The Doll is a very creepy story, way ahead of its time. It is a very dark tale about a woman's total obsession with a mechanical male sex doll. She drives her lover mad with jealousy with the intensity of her passion for the doll and consequent indifference to him. The story is short, very sexy, gothically dark, and still cutting-edge although it was written in 1928. The other stories - blah.

Hitchcock loved du Maurier - three of her works were the basis of films he made - Jamaica Inn, Rebecca a
Apr 07, 2015 Candi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: short-stories
This collection of some of Daphne du Maurier's earliest writing was very absorbing. I am quite glad I have had the opportunity to discover stories she conceived in the beginning stages of her very accomplished career. In these thirteen short stories du Maurier demonstrates her skill at depicting the very subtle nuances of human behavior and thinking. The overall tone is quite somber. She explores jealousy, egocentricity, obsession, manipulation, degeneracy, fear and foreboding, and disappointmen ...more
Feb 22, 2011 Hannah marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition

Here's why:

I have too many GR friends and books. I mean, who needs a review or friends to read it? Much better to let a book like this languish in the never-never land of 0-books-0-friends world. Much better that a giveaway junkie who really just wants a freebie will win this instead of a 3 year member who takes the time to read and review books.

It's not as though I'm a du Maurier fan or anything. Nah, not me. Nope. Nuh-uh.

I think I've been black
The Doll is a compliation of 'lost' short stories by Daphne du Maurier, most written early in her career and either published or discovered much later. It's safe to say this is a mixed bag, and not a book I would recommend to readers who aren't already familiar with du Maurier's stories. While I enjoyed the majority of the tales in this collection, they are very different to those I have found in other collections by the author: many of them are about relationships, and the tone of most is more ...more
Mar 01, 2016 Obsidian rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
I don't know what happened this time. The first time through I could not get through this collection. My mind was wandering, I couldn't even get through the sentences. I just took it off my reading shelf and ignored it for more than a year. This time though, I flew this collection. Daphne du Maurier is able to tap into the deepest/darkest parts of people and is able to wrap it up in just a few pages. I thought all of these stories were great.

East Wind (4.5 stars)-This story is just giving you a
Jul 07, 2012 Jaksen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loved it. She was morbid and weird and crazy, at least in her writing. I've recently read a book about her, her father and James Barrie, author of Peter Pan. It's a wonder she got to age 23 with her brain intact.

I look forward to 2039, and hope I am still around, to read her adolescent diaries, which she forbid to be published until that date.

Still, even if I knew nothing of her background, these stories would be great. 'The Doll' itself is one of the weirdest things I've ever read, but knowing
Lydia Presley
Original review posted here

I don’t know which short story to gush about in this review. From the creepy, ick factor of the book’s title story, The Doll, to the heartbreaking loss experienced in East Wind, to the funny, but bittersweet tale of Frustration… I could go on and on.

I think one story though really got to me. I loved them all for their tragic, gothic-like settings, stories and people.. but there is one story that is all letters that move from the thrilling moments of a new, forbidden lo
Ryan G
Jan 12, 2012 Ryan G rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I adore a well written short story more than I do the same writing in novel form. The skill needed to tell a finely honed story in such a small amount of space, when down well, never fails to impress me. This collection of thirteen stories blew me away, every single one of them made me laugh, shudder, and stare in amazement once I was done.

I don't know what to type next or even what to say if someone were to ask me about this one. I think I would just stand there, tongue-tied, unable to fully ex
Not as multi-textured as her later stories, but still...damn impressive. And not a happy ending among them ;-)
Lovers who are misaligned, married couples uneven in their love for one another, mother-daughter pairs where the daughter dotes, the mother competes... There is humor here too, but not as much as in the later works. If there is a fault it is that you can often tell to what ending the story is headed, which is not so much true of her later work. Still, the journey there is not to be misse
The Doll is a collection of du Maurier's early short stories. The introduction (by someone I'm not otherwise aware of) seems to suggest that the main interest here is in the beginnings of themes that later haunted her work, and the glimpses of the things that haunted her personally. I'm not that interested in that, though, but I still found the stories well-crafted and interesting. Daphne du Maurier certainly had a way with her narration; 'The Limpet' made me smile in recognition...

Not as fine a
Sep 11, 2015 Susan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Daphne Du Maurier brings both her skill for writing atmospheric and brooding stories, and her undoubted understanding of human nature, to this excellent anthology.
Some of these stories were better than others, but the writing was consistently good, with some of the pieces containing powerful messages about the society she found herself living in.
There were some memorable characters, such a clergyman, who is such an odious hypocrite....not really a man of god at all, but a man full of vanity and
Audra (Unabridged Chick)
Daphne du Maurier is one of my patron saints, one of the handful of writers who indelibly shaped me and my tastes in literature, so I expected I'd love this collection of 'lost' short stories. I wasn't disappointed: the pieces here are wry and a little dark and deliciously British. These stories span her career, from her start to her post-Rebecca and post-The Birds days, and it's really exciting to see her entire career captured here.

While du Maurier is known for her deliciously Gothic novels,
Apr 07, 2015 Stacey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm not typically a fan of short story collections, however I really enjoyed this collection. Daphne du Maurier is an outstanding author and she really understands the nuances of human nature. This is exhibited time and again in this short story collection. Most of these were written early on in Daphne du Maurier's career, with one being written later on. I seemed to get the impression that she prefers certain names for her characters or no name at all. I believe she went on to explore some of t ...more
Jan 28, 2014 Mmars rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: short-stories
I wonder if, as readers who know du Maurier's later works, we are a bit harsh in our judgment of this collection of stories. After all, du Maurier wrote all but one of the stories in this collection between the ages of 18 and 23. Additionally, they were published singley in magazines and not intended to be compiled nor to be read in succession.

But read in succession I did. I devoured them. For her young age, she showed remarkable insight into the behaviors, attitudes and thoughts that may lead t
Stephanie Jobe
Sep 12, 2012 Stephanie Jobe rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Alright I am going to do this story by story. This is always harder I can’t give much of a blurb for a short story without giving anything away and her writing has always defied description for me. I can remember reading Rebecca in school and realizing afterwards that piece of information you never receive, but you also don’t realize it is missing. Rebecca is one of the few books from school that I really want to reread.

“East Wind”

An idyllic island village cut off from the world and living the s
Feb 10, 2012 Tony rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
THE DOLL: The Lost Short Stories. (various, 1926-1932). Daphne du Maurier. ****.
This is a great collection of previously uncollected short stories by this author. They are called “lost” because they had been published in relatively obscure magazines at the time, and became unavailable to anthologists. Ms. du Maurier must have inherited genes that promoted writing skill, since these early stories were truly exceptional for one new to the craft. They all deal, in one way or another, with the rela
More like a 3.5/5 stars.

One thing I really love about Daphne Du Maurier is her writing. It is kind of dark, Gothic, and very visual.

The only other work of Du Maurier's I have read is her most famous work Rebecca, and it is one of my all-time favorite classics and novels.

This short story collection, while extremely well-written, to me, felt different than Rebeccca. While there were a few short stories I enjoyed, and some shocking in their subject matter, there were others I felt were just okay.
Here is an early showcase of Du Mauriers' literary prowess and her interest for certain themes that she would develop later into full length novels. In this little medley of tales one can spot a prototype of ‘Manderley’ house as well as recurrences of the blood-red azaleas that have become synonymous with it (the haunted setting of her most acclaimed novel ‘Rebecca’).

Overall, the stories centre on the varying degrees of sexual degeneration and the disintegration of relationships. These are expl
Amy Sturgis
This is a collection of some of Daphne du Maurier's earliest works. While it's a bit uneven, as you'd expect, all of the stories are solid, and some are truly excellent.

The standout stories, in my opinion, are the following:

"East Wind" reads a bit like Du Maurier is channeling H.P. Lovecraft. It's a haunting, harrowing sketch. Just lovely.

"And Now to God the Father" is a brilliantly dark and cynical look at the vain and self-satisfied worldly ambition of a vicar who serves man instead of God. T
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 16, 2011 Melody rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
After reading Daphne du Maurier's Rebecca and loving it, I decided to read The Doll, a compilation of short stories she had written during the early 1930s. I understand that many of the short stories in this collection were published in periodicals way back then and it is only at this time that they have found their way into print.

While reading The Doll: Short Stories, I couldn't help comparing this to Rebecca as the latter had left quite a deep impression on me. I don't think I'd ever forget th
Aug 28, 2011 Ivan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I've only read the titular story - but it's riveting entertainment; very dark and macabre. A man becomes obssessed with a woman who toys with his affections. What's macabre about that? Well, she has this mechanical male doll named Julio in the other room, life sized and fully funtional (if you get my drift). This is only 15 pages long, but full of suspense and dread. I haven't read the rest of the stories in this collection.

I have several collections of Lady Browning's stories - partly because t
Dec 17, 2014 Melanti rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: e-book, anthology, 2016
There's a bit of everything in this collection. A little humor, a little eeriness. A couple precursors to her wonderful Rebecca. Yet, I wasn't a huge fan of most of the stories.

The titular story, "The Doll" was very memorable, and I can see why it wouldn't have been published way back when. And there were a couple other stories that also would have seemed improper back then.

But for the most part, these stories seem far, far less polished than the novels by her that I've read, and not nearly as
So interesting to read the early short stories of Daphne du Maurier - you can sense the talent, but it's clearly not fully formed. Only a couple of the stories have the creep factor that her later works have ("East Wind" and "The Doll") while the rest are more character studies. Maybe it was her youth or lack of writing experience that made stories like "Picadilly" and "Mazie" feel slightly off.

As I said, you can clearly sense the talent here and it's interesting to see the development between
Kirsten *Make Margaret Atwood Fiction Again!"
Lovely set of short stories by Daphne du Maurier, author of Rebecca and the short story The Birds is based on. Some of them are sinister, some a little sad, all have a tinge of darkness to them. I wouldn't classify them as horror or even really suspense, but the darkness is more of an atmosphere like the fog you get on a winter's morning.

Very enjoyable set. I highly recommend it.
Marceleen Mosher
Aug 17, 2016 Marceleen Mosher rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I would give this a 3 if not for the incredible mastery of the human condition displayed in these short stories. Mundane but not boring, commonplace but not ordinary. These stories are nothing out of the ordinary just masterful and enjoyable. I am hooked on du Maurier after these!
Diane S ☔
Dec 12, 2011 Diane S ☔ rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 As always Du Maurier's writing is extremely atmospheric. Some of these stories are ironic, some are very dark and some such as "The Doll' are very chilling. Definitely could have given Stephen King a run for his money had they been writing and publishing during the same time period.
Nice collection, especially considering these are her early works.
Apr 24, 2017 Angela rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Some good and some not so good stories although I did love seeing all the little roots of her later predominant themes.
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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 a fairy tale. Born into a fami
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“Then all at once she turned to me, her face pale, her eyes strangely alight. She said, “Is it possible to love someone so much, that it gives one a pleasure to hurt them? To hurt them by jealousy, I mean, and to hurt myself at the same time. Pleasure and pain, an equal mingling of pleasure and pain, just as an experiment, a rare sensation?” 5 likes
“You are such a part of me that to stand alone leaves me dumb, without speech, without eyes. Life is valueless unless I can share everything with you – beauty, ugliness, pain.” 2 likes
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