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Jamaica Inn [Paperback]

Daphne Du Maurier
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (299 customer reviews)

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Book Description

2 Jan 1992
Stark and forbidding, Jamaica Inn stands alone on bleak Bodmin Moor, its very walls tainted with corruption. Young Mary Yellan soon learns of her uncle Joss Merlyn's strange trade here - but does he deal in blacker secrets still? The author also wrote Rebecca and My Cousin Rachel.


Product details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Arrow Books Ltd; New edition edition (2 Jan 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0099865602
  • ISBN-13: 978-0099865605
  • Product Dimensions: 17.6 x 11 x 2.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (299 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 336,631 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Daphne du Maurier was born in London, the daughter of the famous actor-manager Sir Gerald du Maurier. Educated at home and later in Paris, she began writing short stories and articles in 1928, and in 1931 her first novel, The Loving Spirit, was published. Rebecca made her one of the most popular authors of her day. Many of her bestselling novels became award-winning films. She lived most of her life in Cornwall, the setting for many of her books. She died in 1989.

Product Description

Review

Daphne du Maurier has no equal (Sunday Telegraph)

A true classic (Amazon.com)

Jamaica Inn is perhaps the most accomplished historical romance ever written (Good Book Guide)

Jamaica Inn is a first-rate page-turner. (The Times) --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Book Description

A memorable novel rich in character and imagination. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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IT WAS a cold grey day in late November. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
47 of 48 people found the following review helpful
By Lucy Felthouse TOP 1000 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback
This isn't the sort of book I'd normally pick up, but on a fairly recent visit to the South West, I visited the Jamaica Inn. After eating there and having a look around the gift shop and noting the tourists swarming around, I thought I'd better find out exactly what all the fuss was about. And so I got hold of a copy of this book. I'm glad I did.

Though Daphne du Maurier is best known for her novel Rebecca, Jamaica Inn appealed more to me because of having been to the place. Though it's undoubtedly changed considerably since du Maurier's time, I can definitely still see how it must have affected her all those years ago. Looking out across the horizon where the moors stretch, I can see how foreboding it must have been; less the hundreds of tourists, village and nearby dual carriageway.

Jamaica Inn is the story of Mary Yellan. Recently orphaned, Mary grants her mother's dying wish by travelling across Cornwall to go and live with her Aunt Patience at Jamaica Inn, a lonely inn on the Bodmin to Launceston road. However, before arriving, Mary hears all kinds of odd tales about the goings-on at the inn, mainly stories to do with the horrible man that it appears her aunt has married. Sure that the people are exaggerating and her uncle is merely misunderstood, Mary continues on her way. But shortly after arriving at her new home, Mary realises that she has made a mistake. The once-happy Patience is now a shadow of her former self, skulking around and pandering to her husband's every whim. It would appear that the rumours she'd heard were true.

There are few visitors to the inn, and the people that do come are just like her Uncle Joss, loud, uncouth and intimidating.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply The Best - Leslie Temby 2 Mar 2000
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
So many times I have driven past Jamaca Inn, the wide open moorland has not changed over the years, the Innn is a true place it really exsists, Now it is hard to think of the place back in the early 1800s its now a friendly place to visit so warm,the wreckers have gone but the church at Alternum still stands and for those who have read this thrilling tale of how things might have been in 19th centuary Cornwall stands as a reminder of the Rev Davey. Pick this book up and you will never put it down until you have finished, and then you will want to read it again. As a true Cornishman I can tell you that this book is well worth the read,
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50 of 53 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brooding, mysterious, brilliant... 28 Feb 2007
Format:Paperback
I defy anyone not to be gripped by the opening chapter where the heroine, Mary Yellan is travelling to Jamaica Inn by stagecoach on a winter's night battling the wind and rain. Like her other books Du Maurier draws the setting, Bodmin Moor in Cornwall brilliantly and this coupled with a feisty heroine and a giant rogue of a villain in her uncle, the landlord of Jamaica Inn all make for a great read. The Inn itself, hinted at early on as being a sinister place, does not disappoint and I was totally drawn into the dark goings on as Mary slowly unravels its secrets and that of her uncle.
Rebecca is better but this is still an excellent book and will keep you hooked to the twistingly brilliant ending. Faultless writing by, in my opinion, the master storyteller.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Passionate romance set in Victorian Cornwall 25 Jan 2007
By Greshon
Format:Paperback
Like Wuthering Heights, the scenery and setting in this brooding book are extremely important, creating and refelcting mood. Here, rather than the Yorkshire Moors, it's Bodmin Moor in Cornwall. Within these bleak and hostile moors sits the solitary and isolated inn of the title (still there in real life), presided over by the frightening and cruel drunkard, Joss Merlyn. But is he the real villain, or is he just being used by an even more powerful force?

What I particulalty like about this book is that it's set in Victorian times, reads very much like a Victiorian novel, but is not blunted by that era's strict censorship (Jamaica Inn was published in the - slightly- freer 1930s). Mary and Jem actually do frolic quite suggestively, despite not being married, and this behaviour is not damned by the narrative.

It is interesting that Hitchcock made films of three Du Maurier works. As well as Jamaica Inn, The Birds and Rebecca are also based on her stories. He must have been a fan.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
By Misfit TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Mass Market Paperback
"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 Northern Cornwall. Mary arrives and finds that no respectable person will venture near the inn, nor will the carriages stop there for respite. Her once lively and personable aunt is now a terrified shell of a woman married to drunkard inn owner Joss Merlyn. When Joss prepares to entertain "guests" Mary and her aunt are instructed to stay in their rooms and keep their eyes and ears covered -- although our spunky heroine does peek out the window and sees mysterious comings and goings and Mary suspects smuggling.

Mary also becomes friends with her uncle's younger brother Jem, a ne'er do well horse thief (among other things) and the mysterious albino minister Francis Davey. A mischance on the road on the way home from the village on Christmas Eve puts Mary in the middle of her Uncle and his nefarious companions in the midst of a more gruesome crime than smuggling, thus setting in motion a terrifying set of circumstances building up to a nail biting finish on the Bodmin moors.

While this one got off to a bit of a slow start for me, by the last 50 or so pages I was on the edge of my seat as Du Maurier gradually built up the tension and mystery for a rocking good finish, and a big surprise twist at the end. I really enjoyed the way the author used the spookiness of the moors and the surrounding terrain of Cornwall to set her scenes and it greatly enhanced the feel of the book in general. 4.5/5 stars.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Classic.
A 'must' read but not the best book you'll read.
Published 6 days ago by J. Mansfield
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great
Published 7 days ago by caroline
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
enjoyable read
Published 10 days ago by Sonia M.
5.0 out of 5 stars A ripping yarn, that gives a harmless old coaching inn intriguing, if...
Can't believe I've never got around to reading this book before. Stopped off at Jamaica Inn often enough over the years for a meal and a pint, but I'd never been tempted by Du... Read more
Published 14 days ago by S. Hastings
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
a good read and looks great on the book shelf xxx
Published 26 days ago by GILL HARDY
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
great read lovely author, spell binding tale, kept me spellbound. highly recommend this author Joan
Published 29 days ago by Joan
5.0 out of 5 stars Pure Class
This is a stunning book, by a terrific writer. A dark, Gothic melodrama that absolutely reeks with atmosphere, this book is infinitely better than Rebecca. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Derick Parsons
4.0 out of 5 stars Far fetched
Like the book but don't "get" the heroine. Far fetched
Published 1 month ago by amazonian
5.0 out of 5 stars Still one of my favourite books. Lost count of how many times I ...
Still one of my favourite books. Lost count of how many times I have read it. Du Maurier still keeps me enthralled even though I know the stories. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars An Old Friend
I enjoy re-reading a classic every now and again and this is still a gripping story
Published 1 month ago by Chrissie
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