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Rebecca

4.19  ·  Rating Details  ·  285,041 Ratings  ·  12,273 Reviews
"Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again . . ."
The novel begins in Monte Carlo, where our heroine is swept off her feet by the dashing widower Maxim de Winter and his sudden proposal of marriage. Orphaned and working as a lady's maid, she can barely believe her luck. It is only when they arrive at his massive country estate that she realizes how large a shadow his la
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Published 1996 by Droemer Knaur (first published May 1938)
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Cal You will realise that she is exactly how the author wants her to seem, like a bit of an idiot, naive, young...keep going and you won't be able to put…moreYou will realise that she is exactly how the author wants her to seem, like a bit of an idiot, naive, young...keep going and you won't be able to put it down. (less)
Beth I personally love her because I can relate to her so much, like her I hate to meet new people and I can be socially awkward, and I sometimes feel like…moreI personally love her because I can relate to her so much, like her I hate to meet new people and I can be socially awkward, and I sometimes feel like I have a lack of identity and am overshadowed by friends and family (though no ex-wife of my husband!).

It's quite simply really, but two times I think she should have acted otherwise are when she hid the broken ornament instead of owning up straight away and climbed out of the window so not to have to meet Beatrice and Giles. Both those times really annoyed me!
And because I felt really sorry for her when it happened, I wish she'd asked Maxim or someone about the dress before wearing it for the ball!(less)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Kelly
This is it. THE delicious, curl up next to the fire under a blanket with tea book. THE windowsill on a rainy day with your pet book. THE stay up all night book. A chill goes down your spine (but in a good way!) while reading it. It is a masterpiece of gothic literature, the inheritor of the tradition of novels like Wuthering Heights and Jane Eyre. I'd call it the 20th Century Jane Eyre, actually, with a modernist twist. It is written so that the characters and events come to seem quite believabl ...more
Jeffrey Keeten
May 14, 2015 Jeffrey Keeten rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
”Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again".

This is one of the more famous lines in literature certainly it belongs in the same conversation as Call me Ishmael. Even to people who have never read the book or seen the excellent movie by Alfred Hitchcock might have a glimmer of recognition at the mention of a place called Manderley. Daphne du Maurier leased a place called Menabilly which became the basis for the fictional Manderley. Aren’t we glad she changed the name? Just say Manderley a few
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Navessa
Well…this is awkward.



So, most of my friends love this book. Naturally, I wanted to as well. I blame the herd mentality.

Baaah.

Did I love this book? At times, yes. Did I also loathe this book? At times, yes. It’s made deciding on a rating a much more daunting task than I normally face. After reflecting on it for some time, and re-reading my f-bomb laden notes, I’m going with two stars, because as a whole, I did not enjoy this.

While I greatly detested some aspects, I can still recognize gorgeou
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Arlene Sanders
Nov 27, 2008 Arlene Sanders rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: book-reviews
HERE IS MY HEART...


REBECCA is my favorite book of all time -- bar none.

The opening line is famous, but I didn’t know that the first time I read it (I was about 14). I just remember that the magic began with that first line:


Last night, I dreamt I went to Manderly again....


The girl is young, clumsy, exquisitely sensitive. Impoverished and alone after her father’s death, she was employed by a wealthy and boorish social climber, Mrs. Van Hopper, and made her living as the older woman’s companion.

Ma
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Madeline
Sep 09, 2007 Madeline rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"I dreamt I went to Manderley again."
Rebecca is the story of a young woman (her first name is never given) who marries wealthy Maxim de Winter, mostly to escape her life as a companion to a rich American woman. She moves with her new husband to his estate, Manderly, where she learns about her husband's previous wife, Rebecca. Although Rebecca drowned in the ocean near the house over a year ago, the house is still full of her prescence. Her old room is cleaned daily, and is left exactly the way i
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Lora
Jul 31, 2011 Lora rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of classics from the early - mid 20th century
Recommended to Lora by: Arlene, Wendy, my love for all things Gothic and romantic
Rebecca is a classic tale that weaves mystery, secrets, and romance into an intricate and stunning twine. It tells the story of a young girl who is swept off her feet by a much older man with money and possessions aplenty — and even more heartache in his recent past.
Since his wife's tragic death eight months ago, Maxim de Winter has been doing everything he can to forget the horrific part of his past that has left him feeling bereft of happiness and aloof from others.
But even with this kind of
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Tatiana
May 10, 2010 Tatiana rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: lovers of classics
Recommended to Tatiana by: Hannahr, Ryan
Books like Rebecca remind me from time to time what quality literature really is. Sometimes I forget, buried under stacks of entertaining but often poorly written popular fiction.

At first, Rebecca is very reminiscent of another favorite book of mine - Jane Eyre. The main character is a young, innocent, poor girl who falls in love with a rich older man. The happiness is so near, but the shadow of the man's first wife stands in the way of it. A family secret, a haunted mansion, a deranged servant
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Samadrita
If I found myself in Interstellar's tesseract by a quirk of fate, then chances are I might leave a coded message for my younger self to read Rebecca asap. Since my ill-informed, younger self was not put off by cloyingly sentimental narrators who make the experience of 'tell don't show' all the more grating or the gender politics underpinning a work, her reaction to the book would have been more in tune with the multitude of gushing reviews on GR and elsewhere.
My heart, for all its anxiety and d
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Jean
"Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again."

This beautiful first line is instantly recognisable, and has passed into our culture. Like all great openings it captures our imagination and makes us want to read more. The rhythm is insistent, the mention of dreams intrigues us and the word "Manderley" echoes somewhere in our subconscious. We are already in danger of falling under Daphne Du Maurier's hypnotic spell.

Generally regarded as Daphne du Maurier's masterpiece, Rebecca has never been out
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Henry Avila
Sep 12, 2015 Henry Avila rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Manderley... a mist on the hill, an unreal mansion, dark, threatening, unfathomable, unreachable, a thing that can not exist, only seen through a dream, a mirage, that will pass into the night, and float into nothingness, a nightmarish, chilling legend, that will continue, but the reality never discovered, for a myth has no answers just questions...Maximilian (Maxim) de Winter is a sad English widower, at 42, living an aimless life, travelling to forget, but can't, staying in a Monte Carlo hotel ...more
Libby
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Cheryl
Manderley, "today we we pass on, we see it no more, and we are different, changed in some infinitesimal way. We can never be quite the same again." It's such a sensation, when you read a book and a place is so memorable that it stays with you. To have place, plot, and person in such congruency, this is a treat; it is when you know an author is at her best. When I remember this book, I won't think of Rebecca, the deceased wife, nor will I recall the nameless narrator and gullible young bride o ...more
Kim
I first read this novel approximately forty years ago, when I was a teenager. I have an enduring memory of walking around my home, nose firmly in the book, unable to put it down. Yesterday, listening to the concluding chapters of the audiobook, I had the same experience. I could not stop listening until it was over.

When I was a teenager, what captivated me most about Rebecca was the plot: the relationship between the unnamed narrator and Maxim de Winter, the machinations of Mrs Danvers, the mys
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Nandakishore Varma
Mar 09, 2015 Nandakishore Varma rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classic, gothic
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Wendy Darling
Still my favorite gothic novel of all time. A troubled love interest, an unwelcoming housekeeper, a house haunted by the memories of its previous mistress, and a young girl who is ill-equipped to handle everything...all the elements for a wildly mysterious and romantic story that is unforgettably and beautifully written.
Valerie
Jan 24, 2014 Valerie marked it as unfinished  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classic
It was quite a painful book and not really in a good way. The protagonist is so insecure. How can someone walk around feeling so...desperate, depressed, and doubtful about everything? It was depressing. I could not finish it.

It's not necessarily a bad book; I just couldn't stand how uncomfortable she felt all the time. It's like those people who had to do presentations in class that looked so flustered you felt bad for them and watching them was just out right painful. That was like this book f
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Matt
Apr 26, 2016 Matt rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As a reader, there’s nothing so thrilling as the joy of discovery. Of happening upon a book you’ve never heard of, reading it, and absolutely loving it. And then going out and telling ten other people about the incredible experience. That happened to me upon reading Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca.

To be sure, I didn't exactly “discover” Rebecca any more than Columbus discovered America. After all, it was published in 1938 and has never gone out of print. More to the point, I was not ignorant of its
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Florence (Lefty) MacIntosh
The author’s dark twist of mystery & suspense adds depth & substance to what is really just a rehash of the classic Cinderella story. I was immediately hooked by the opening line "Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again" then swept into one of the most enchanting descriptive passages I’ve ever read, a dream-walk through the manor’s overgrown and abandoned garden. “The beeches with white, naked limbs leant close to one another; their branches intermingled in a strange embrace. A lil ...more
Jason
This book has immediately become one of my favorites. Manderley stands out like a main character in this novel with sights, sounds, and smells so richly described. The unnamed narrator often finds herself daydreaming, imagining hypothetical situations playing themselves out in her head, which is really intriguing. But mostly, it is the crafting of suspense throughout the story that is most impressive—it was as though I were hanging on every word until the very last sentence. A masterful novel in ...more
Scarlet Cameo
Apr 18, 2016 Scarlet Cameo rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: rc-16
"Hemos salido vencedores de la prueba, aunque no hayamos escapado ilesos"

Este es uno de esos libros que conviene iniciar sabiendo lo mínimo, aún con lo complicado que puede ser. Desde las primera páginas lo que destaca es la inestabilidad de nuestra desconocida narradora, una chica joven e insegura (increiblemente necesitada de un amiga/guía para su nueva vida) que, conforme pasan los meses desde que conoce a Maxim de Winter en Monte Carlo hasta que finaliza la historia, tiene un gran cambio.
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Jo
"Sometimes I wonder if she comes back here to Manderley and watches you and Mr de Winter together..."

Holy moly. Where to start?
Well, it's probably best to point out that Rebecca is the best book to read on a dark, murky dismal day in a room with a roaring open fire and a sheepskin rug with pictures of long dead relatives lining the walls. However, due to unforseen circumstances (I was..um.. unable to move to a secluded mansion in the South with open roaring fire and pics of dead family members)
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Emily May
Rebecca is just a great story that never gets old. Great characters, great writing... it remains one of my all time favourites and I seem to appreciate something new every time I return to it.
Margitte
"Last night I dreamed we went to Manderley again" One of the most famous opening lines of a book was also part of my dreams for so many years. I had to go there. To Manderley. Again.

Manderley, oh Manderley. What made you capture the hearts of so many millions of readers in so many years!

This is a reread for me and was, again, one of those books I simply could not leave alone. The first read was when I was a young adult, probably 20 years old. Like Madame De Bovary and other books such as Lady Ch
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Γκέλλυ
Apr 21, 2016 Γκέλλυ rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, classics, 2016
«Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again»

Η ιστορία μιας νεαρής γυναίκας που παντρεύεται έναν ευγενή, τον Μάξιμ ντε Γουίντερ και επιστρέφει μαζί του στο κτήμα του, στο Μάντερλεϊ. Εκεί τη στοιχειώνει η αίσθηση της πρώτης του συζύγου, της Ρεβέκκας, η οποία έχει πεθάνει σε ένα τραγικό ατύχημα.

Η Ρεβέκκα αν και πεθαμένη είναι ο κυρίαρχος χαρακτήρας του βιβλίου. Ατίθαση, ζωηρή, εγωίστρια, έκφυλη και διεφθαρμένη για τα ήθη εκείνης της εποχής, επηρεάζει ακομα και μετά τον θάνατο της, όλα όσα συμβα
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Joe Valdez
Apr 02, 2014 Joe Valdez rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Ghost hunters, McMansion lovers, Gothic chicks
Shelves: mystery-suspense
I can't recall what possessed me to bump Daphne du Maurier's 1938 Gothic mystery so far up my reading list. Rebecca was the source material for the Academy Award winning Best Picture of 1940, directed by Alfred Hitchcock and starring Joan Fontaine & Laurence Olivier, a film I recall being visually stunning but very un-Hitchcockian in its plot development. It had more in common with Gone With the Wind than Strangers on a Train. My urge to give more female authors an honest read and to find so ...more
Duchess Nicole


Dark, Gothic, mysterious...you can say all of this about Rebecca, but I have to say that none of these really does the book justice.

Yes, it's got some dark to it. It's a story of the second wife...the young and naive bride of the rich, powerful Maximus deWinter. A tragic hero whose first wife died a bit less than a year ago. Maxim seems in turns devastated, angry, and confused about Rebecca. And in turn, our heroine...whom we never do learn the name of...what's up with that? My GR friend Cathy
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Saoirse Sterling
Read as part of the #InfiniteVariety2016 Reading Challenge based on the BBC's Big Read poll.

My only point of reference for Rebecca is a Comic Strip Presents... episode written and staring Jennifer Saunders called Consuela, which is loosely based upon this iconic novel, which contains one of my all time favourite Rik Mayall comedy quotes. ("Jennifer, did you kill all these people?") Throughout my read I was envisioning that episode. I suppose you could say it spoilt it for me, but not in the way
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Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
Big buddy read with the Reading For Pleasure book club, starting April 25, 2016.

I read Rebecca maybe 15 or 20 years ago and didn't really care for it back then. I'm not entirely sure now of the reasons why, but I think it may have been that I was expecting more of a romance with some nice happy feels at the end? So now that my expectations have been adjusted, we're going to give this another shot.
Tim The Enchanter
My Number 4 Best Read of 2015

Hard to Give this Anything but 5 Stars

Throughout my experience with this book, I ran the gamut from loathing to loving. My experience with the story had been that from the wonderful 1940's film version of the book. As a side note, the movie is a Alfred Hitchcock masterpiece (winner of the 1941 Oscar for best picture). I highly recommend it. I don't recall a time where I have enjoyed the book AND the movie so much. They form a veritable power couple.


Plot summary
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Catie
Sep 12, 2011 Catie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Catie by: Jo
I’ve always been fond of stories about girls lifting themselves up by their bootstraps: girls who have meager beginnings and no expectations, girls born into poverty, orphan girls, slave girls, girls who have a fire inside, a completely consuming drive to succeed.

This is the most twisted, perverted version of that story I’ve ever read.

Our narrator is a nameless, spineless, child-like girl who vacillates between rosy colored visions of her future, and harsh self-flagellation. She makes wild and n
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2001717
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
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“Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again.” 1526 likes
“If only there could be an invention that bottled up a memory, like scent. And it never faded, and it never got stale. And then, when one wanted it, the bottle could be uncorked, and it would be like living the moment all over again.” 1277 likes
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