Dispatch the maimed, the old, the weak, destroy the very world itself, for what is the point of life if the promise of fulfilment lies elsewhere?
On the windswept coast of rural Suffolk, a deranged scientist attempts to extract the essence of life itself.
Penguin Modern: fifty new books celebrating the pioneering spiritof the iconic Penguin Modern Clas...more
This book felt to me like a plot for a story before it's been actually executed. The ideas were fantastic and thought provoking, but the actual story didn't do justice to the subject.
I also agree with Jason that du Maurier was ahead of her time with aspects of technology in this book, but it didn't quite work for me.(less)
Originally posted on A Frolic Through Fiction
* Rated 3.5 stars
My first taste of du Maurier, at last! I’ve been meaning to delve into her books for awhile now – especially Rebecca – and I figured this one would be the perfect little taster to get me started. And I wasn’t wrong! Definitely more on the SciFi side of things, this one follows a scientist as he tries to discover the secret behind the afterlife, or the essence of life itself. Without feeling too short or too long, du Maurier managed to ...more
'What?' I hear you asking that. Let me explain.
It is true that this crisp, slim short story belongs quite comfortably to the eerie, metaphysical thriller genre, centering on a ragtag band of not-quite-prudent scientists who are working on a strange experiment on a remote spot near the coast. It has the echoes of Edgar Allen Poe and H.P Lovecraft but while those American legends, at one level ...more
The juxtaposition of the rugged beauty of the landscape and the technology of the research facility worked really well. I also loved the moral ambiguity of the story. The fact that the 'weak' (a terminally ill young man, an animal, and an 'idiot child') are used as guinea pigs in ...more
A very interesting idea and for sure Daphne du Maurier’s writing is extremely atmospheric. If you never tried one of her books and you’d like a taste of her writing, this could be a very decent start (again, especially for the way she can convey a gothic atmosphere so well).
‘A scientists attempt to solve the mystery of life after death has chilling consequences.’
Du Maurier can write anything I swear, this teeny short story packs such a punch and is so different from Jamaica Inn (the only other book I’ve read by her) that it makes me believe that she can write anything and it’ll sit beautifully in her collection of works! ...more
Our narrator, Stephen Saunders, is an electronics engineer who has been sent to work in an isolated facility in Saxmere on the east coast of England, where the scientist James MacLean is carrying out secret experiments in creating methods of destruction for the military. Saunders isn’t thrilled at the assignment, since MacLean has a dubious reputation as an eccentric. He meets the people who will be his colleagues: MacLean, or Mac as he’s known; young Ken Ryan, who doesn’t seem to ...more
An enjoyable little story about scientific experiments into life after death. In less than 60 pages manages to have suspense, sci-fi and leave you with plenty of curiosity.
In many ways the life of Daphne du Maurier resembles a fairy tale. Born into a fami ...more