Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Jamaica Inn” as Want to Read:
Jamaica Inn
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Jamaica Inn

3.85  ·  Rating details ·  23,395 Ratings  ·  1,965 Reviews
The coachman tried to warn her away from the ruined, forbidding place on the rainswept Cornish coast. But young Mary Yellan chose instead to honor her mother's dying request that she join her frightened Aunt Patience and huge, hulking Uncle Joss Merlyn at Jamaica Inn. From her first glimpse on that raw November eve, she could sense the inn's dark power. But never did Mary ...more
Paperback, 302 pages
Published June 1st 1995 by Avon (first published 1935)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Jamaica Inn, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
This question contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
Jackie Carreira Yes, it's fine. If you loved Rebecca, you'll love this too. Very different kind of story but just as gripping.

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
Rating details
Sort: Default
Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽

Upping my rating to 5 stars on reread. I have to hand it to Daphne du Maurier: she takes the fusty old gothic novel conventions and tropes, and amps them up in this 1936 novel. The setting is classic gothic―it's the 1820s in a lonely, cold and windswept area of Cornwall, near the treacherous Bodmin Moor, in a decaying inn that all honest people avoid.

The real Jamaica Inn, built in 1750, which inspired this novel

An isolated, orphaned young woman, 23 year old Mary Yellan, comes to stay with the pr
Bionic Jean
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
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.
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
Published in 1936, two years before Rebecca, Jamaica Inn is a dark tale of murder and thievery, set close to the Bodmin Moor in Cornwall, England. It has a hint of romance, although I wouldn't call it romantic. It would have to be called a mystery if you had to give it a tag. The style is typical of the other du Maurier novels I have read, and excellent writing with great characters. It was a little slow to develop for me but once it did the pace ran quickly to the climax.
3.5 stars
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

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

Mar 31, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
Η ταβέρνα της Τζαμάικας μου άρεσε πολύ περισσότερο από το Ρεβέκκα. Αν και τα κοινά των δύο μυθιστορημάτων είναι πολλά περισσότερα από τις διαφορές τους. Η Μωριέ ανήκει στο ρομαντικό είδος ή πιο συγκεκριμένα στο sensational. Αν και ευτυχώς για εμένα της λείπει η μελοδραματικότητα των συγκεκριμένων ειδών, αυτός ο εκβιασμός συναισθημάτων στους αναγνώστες και οι υπερβολικές φιγούρες των ηρώων. Αντιθέτως η Μωρίε είναι πιο… χμ… σεμνή. Ετσι λοιπόν και στην Τζαμάικα οι ήρωες της είναι ρεαλιστικότατοι, π ...more
Apr 10, 2012 rated it really liked it
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
Oct 19, 2008 rated it it was amazing
(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
Ahmad Sharabiani
Jamaica Inn, Daphne du Maurier
Jamaica Inn is a novel by the English writer Daphne du Maurier, first published in 1936. It was later made into a film, also called Jamaica Inn, directed by Alfred Hitchcock. It is a period piece set in Cornwall in 1820. It was inspired by du Maurier's 1930 stay at the real Jamaica Inn, which still exists and is a pub in the middle of Bodmin Moor. The plot follows a group of murderous wreckers who run ships aground, kill the sailors and steal the cargo.
عنوانها: مهم
Sarah (Presto agitato)
Jan 27, 2012 rated it really liked it
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
May 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved reacquainting myself with a gothic novel. The author certainly knows how to create an atmosphere. The opening scene with the wild carriage ride to Jamaica Inn is reminiscent of the scene in Dracula. Your final destination- an isolated, dark, brooding, unkempt inn that seems closed off from everyone in its sheer isolation. The countryside with the moors, the bogs, the tors all come alive with the author's vivid descriptions. The scene has been set for the arrival of Mary, recently orphane ...more
I hovered between three and four stars but ultimately it gets four- for Mary and for the winds and the rains of the Cornish coast, all of them beautifully described and distinct in my mind after finishing this. The land, as in the best of much of Romantic literature, is the true source of this story's seductive powers.
Erin ☕ *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
I enjoyed this well enough as a work of historical fiction based on smuggling off the coast of Cornwall. I read My Cousin Rachel recently and really enjoyed it but by comparison this wasn't as good.
Natalie Richards
Aug 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned-book
I love the way du Maurier tells a story. This is the third book I`ve read by her and while, for me, it doesn`t have the punch of Rebecca or My Cousin Rachel, I still very much enjoyed it. Full of evil deeds, thievery, malice and the dark moors; it makes for an intriguing read. ...more
Oct 29, 2008 rated it it was ok
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
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
Jan 05, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: great-britain
This is my third du Maurier, I have also read Rebecca and Frenchman's Creek. What strikes me the most is how different they are. Yes, the writing style is similar, you can tell that it's the same author, but the tone, the topic and the characters are very, very different from book to book.

The heroine of Jamaica Inn, Mary Yellan, has to deal with some very ruthless drunks and criminals. As a young girl on her own, she is pretty much helpless when faced with them. She tries to be independent and
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
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.
Jul 05, 2007 rated it it was amazing
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!
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Το βιβλίο αποτέλεσε μια μικρή έκπληξη για μένα.
Με την έννοια ότι άλλα περίμενα και άλλα βρήκα.
Δε φταίει βέβαια το βιβλίο.
Φταίει το ρηχό μου βάθος και η επιπολαιότητα μου, αμφότερα γνωστά στους πάντες.
Κακή η συνήθεια να μη διαβάζεις γνώμες, απόψεις και οπισθόφυλλα.
Κακό πράμα τα στερεότυπα. Πώς πίστευες κυρία μου εσύ, ότι το Ντι Μωριέ έχει να κάνει με συγγραφέα περιποιημένου άρλεκιν και συγγραφέα του διαμετρήματος της Ρόζαμουντ Πίλτσερ;
Τι σόι συσχετισμοί είναι αυτοί;
Και γιατί παρακαλώ δε σου άρε
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
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

-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
Kirk Smith
Jun 06, 2015 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
Nov 17, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-i-own
First off, I am really thankful to have won this beautiful new edition from a Goodreads Giveaway!

I love Daphne du Maurier and this is a truly great example. Every word is evocative as she paints a vivid picture of each barren landscape and soulless individual. The "love" story is more passion than love and I feel more nervous than happy for our heroine by the end of the novel. But it is refreshing to hear the very mature, knowing rationalization she makes of her situation and to see that she ch
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Around the Year i...: Jamaica Inn, by Daphne du Maurier 5 59 Feb 11, 2018 05:51PM  
Catching up on Cl...: Jamaica Inn Discussion: SPOILERS 14 135 Aug 17, 2017 03:35PM  
  • Tregaron's Daughter
  • Nine Coaches Waiting
  • Watch the Wall, My Darling
  • Kirkland Revels
  • Dragonwyck
  • The Vines of Yarrabee
  • Thunder Heights
  • Daphne
  • Mrs de Winter
  • The Lady Vanishes
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
More about Daphne du Maurier
“Because I want to; because I must; because now and forever more this is where I belong to be.” 117 likes
“Dead men tell no tales, Mary.” 35 likes
More quotes…