Hannah's Reviews > Enchanted Cornwall: Her Pictorial Memoir

Enchanted Cornwall by Daphne du Maurier
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Mar 02, 11

bookshelves: 2011-reads, comfort-books, non-fiction
Read in February, 2011

Excellent companion book for any serious fan of du Maurier. This book, published about a year after her death, is her pictorial memoir and features excerpts from all of her major works, photos from her personal collection, beautiful phototography of all the places in Cornwall from her books, as well as her own fascinating insights on her early life and her writing life.

I only meant to read a small portion around midnight before going to bed, but ended up devouring this until I came up for air around 3:00 a.m. If this review reads a bit punchy, it's because I am :)

My favorite parts revolved around her most famous book, Rebecca. I could easily relate to du Maurier's obsession with the real life prototype of Manderley, a house named "Menabilly". du Maurier began stalking the derelict and unoccupied mansion during several forays when she lived in the area. She would go there and sit for long hours on the grass outside and just gaze at the house and dream of all the lives lived there. Once, she gained entrance to the home via an unclasped window and roamed the interior with a flashlight. Much later after writing Rebecca, she and her family had the rare priviledge of renting Menabilly and living there for many years. (How cool is THAT?)

In fact, after reading this book and looking at all the places in and around Cornwall, it's hard to imagine a more perfect place for the London-born du Maurier's writing talent to flourish and expand. This is a book I will refer back to again and again as I re-read du Maurier's books. It also makes a perfect stand-alone book for the dreamer in all of us.
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Comments (showing 1-8 of 8) (8 new)

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message 1: by Misfit (new) - added it

Misfit Sigh, I'd love to make it to Cornwall.


Hannah You and me both, Misfit. It's my #1 area in England to visit, along with the Yorkshire moors.


Susan Can I come too?


Hannah Susan wrote: "Can I come too?"

But of course!


message 5: by Melissa (new)

Melissa I checked this out at the library once I finished The House on the Strand...although I didn't like the book much, this really helped me understand why she wrote it.


Hannah Melissa wrote: "I checked this out at the library once I finished The House on the Strand...although I didn't like the book much, this really helped me understand why she wrote it."

Yes, it's an excellent companion book to reference du Maurier's novels. Another interesting book that gave some fascinating insights into du Maurier's work was Forster's biography: Daphne Du Maurier. Have you read it?


message 7: by Melissa (new)

Melissa I have not...I will check to see if our library has it...thanks for the recommendation.

I really enjoyed Enchanted Cornwall, though.


Hannah Melissa wrote: "I really enjoyed Enchanted Cornwall, though."

Same here. I found a copy on Paperbackswap and now have it as a permanent reference book :)


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