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The Doll: Short Stories (VMC Book 612)

The Doll: Short Stories (VMC Book 612) [Kindle Edition]

Daphne du Maurier , Polly Samson
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Book Description

A collection of short stories by the author of REBECCA and 'THE BIRDS'. Many of these stories have only recently been rediscovered and have not been included a collection before.

Product Description

'I want to know if men realise when they are insane. Sometimes I think that my brain cannot hold together, it is filled with too much horror - too much despair . . . I cannot sleep, I cannot close my eyes without seeing his damned face. If only it had been a dream.' In 'The Doll', a waterlogged notebook is washed ashore. Its pages tell a dark story of obsession and jealousy. But the fate of its narrator is a mystery. Many of the stories in this haunting collection have only recently been discovered. Most were written early in Daphne du Maurier's career, yet they display her mastery of atmosphere, tension and intrigue and reveal a cynicism far beyond her years.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 292 KB
  • Print Length: 223 pages
  • Publisher: Virago (5 May 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004Y5JD3C
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #102,845 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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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.

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
28 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Early Daphne Still Shocks and Surprises 13 May 2011
By Simon Savidge Reads TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Short story collections are always really hard to write about. Do you give a little bit away about each tale, follow some of the themes of the collection, or describe the feelings that they give as a whole. Well, I am going to try and do a mixture of the three though without giving any of the stories endings away as the main joy that I found in `The Doll' was the fact that nearly every single story, apart from maybe two, had a really clever twist at the very end or one that slowly dawned on you as you read on (clearly planned by Daphne herself when writing) and to give any of these away would be a crime really.

The themes behind all the thirteen tales in `The Doll' seem to be either about sex, the darker sides of human beings, the pitfalls of love or a mixture of the three. Yet no matter how similar the theme, they are all told from different angles. For example there are two tales of prostitution and yet `Piccadilly' and `Mazie' are both very, very different tales of two women in very different situations only supplying the same service. Does Daphne have sympathy for these characters? Well you would have to read the books to be sure but I did feel in each tale a different sex was attacked in one tale women might be the victim, in another they might be the villain and men get a rough ride too with Daphne pondering `I want to know if men realise when they are insane.'

I admit when Daphne looked at some of the more relationship based tales such as `A Difference in Temperament', a tale of a man and wife unsure of the others affections after years, or `Week-End' and `Nothing Hurts for Long' I was left a little more non plussed, they didn't really speak out to me so much.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sinister Beauties 12 May 2011
By Gregory S. Buzwell TOP 1000 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
The majority of the short stories in this collection date from very early in du Maurier's career, and while they may, on occasion, lack some of the polish of her later tales they provide a terrific insight into her development as a writer. Most tellingly perhaps the collection proves that those beautiful, sinister twists she was so accomplished at in later life were a gift she had from the very beginning. Similarly the effortlessly elegant prose and the ability to carry a story. Very few writers have ever been quite so good at telling a tale as Daphne du Maurier.

The title story, 'The Doll', is a good example of her ability to twist expectations. The set-up is very simple - an impressionable man becomes besotted with a beautiful and mysterious young violinist - but the conclusion, involving the mechanical doll of the title, is so bizarre, and works so well, that Edgar Allan Poe would have been proud to claim it as one of his own. I can't think of another author who could write about the macabre and the twisted quite so confidently, and carry her readers with her quite so effortlessly. Similarly the tale 'East Wind' in which the inhabitants of a far-flung island find themselves playing unexpected hosts to the crew of a brig sheltering from a storm turns on two totally unexpected, and shockingly violent, events.

One of the other themes that emerges from the collection is how well du Maurier could flitter between her characters; she gives them equal space, and allows her readers to see a narrative from several perspectives. Frequent notions emerge: the impossibility of love lasting; the fickleness of beauty and youth, and the way the old distrust the young, and vice versa.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stories with a twist! 8 Jan 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I am a big Daphne Du Maurier fan and have read many of her 'classics'(Rebecca, The Loving Spirit, My Cousin Rachel, Jamaica Inn) so I was interested to come across this compilation of short stories (ideal for reading before you go to sleep) and was not disappointed! Du Maurier demonstrates her fantastic ability to write inventive story plots with a twist... I can only compare them to that of Roald Dahl's 'Tales of the Unexpected' (which I also have equally enjoyed reading). I bought this as a Kindle book which was great because I didn't have to wait for it to be delivered by post and there's no P & P. I would definitely recommend this book!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 'The Doll: short stories' by Daphne du Maurier 16 Feb 2012
Short story collections can often be a mixed bag, and this book is no exception. However, at its best, we see du Maurier at the height of her powers. The stories are often quite dark explorations of human nature, with some - for the time of writing - quite disturbing explorations of love and sex. Athough a few stories are over-long, they are usually taut tales that create a superbly tense atmosphere; like the best short stories, they often raise as many questions as they answer. Even the least successful stories, coming from her earlier period, allow you to see something of du Maurier's progress as a writer. My favourites in the collection are 'The Doll', 'East Wind' and 'And His Letters Grew Colder': all powerfully written, fascinating and surprising.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ignited a love for short stories 18 Jan 2012
By Rebecca
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I'm not usually a short-story reader but I love Daphne du Maurier, and a friend recommended this book due to my love for slightly sinister and macabre stories. It didn't disappoint. Du Maurier is a gifted story teller and each tale had me gripped from beginning to end. 'The Doll' was probably my favourite from the collection; a man realises he can never satisfy the woman with whom he's obsessed, because she already has everything she needs! A hint at feminism?
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Good
I like Daphne Du Maurier's writing so enjoyed this though not as much as books such as Rebecca and Frenchman's Creek. I would probably recommend it to others who like her writing.
Published 4 months ago by Pat Berry
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
When this series of short stories by the Queen of writing, Daphne Du Maurier, was found a few years ago - I hoped they would be as good as all her other works.... Read more
Published 5 months ago by anasta
5.0 out of 5 stars Great
As with the rest of Daphne Du Maurier books this was enticing and kept me reading until the end. I loved it.
Published 12 months ago by Michele M Martinez
4.0 out of 5 stars Intriguing stories
Enjoyable, early career writing that keeps you turning pages. The Doll, short stories by Daphne du Maurier is an easy introduction to her writing style.
Published 14 months ago by T Lucy
5.0 out of 5 stars Thought provoking
This makes short stories a genre to explore. Britain in a different time but the way people behave doesn't change.
Published 14 months ago by Mrs. Julia Glassborow
4.0 out of 5 stars love books
most of the short stories were rather gripping and fun to read however i would have to say would not be in a rush to read them again. Read more
Published 20 months ago by Kim Hutton
5.0 out of 5 stars Collection of Stories
Thirteen short stories of diversity from Du Maurier. 'And Now To God The Father', is about a social climbing vicar with an air of self-importance. Read more
Published on 12 Jan 2012 by Onora
5.0 out of 5 stars Undervalued Author
A really god collection of short stories by, in my view, an author who is constantly under valued. Brilliant observation of relationships work - great insight.
Published on 22 Oct 2011 by Spilly
5.0 out of 5 stars Daphne Du Maurier Short Stories
An excellent little book, took it to hospital with me and couldn't put it down. Recommended for fans of Daphne or new interest.
Published on 25 Sep 2011 by SNOW LEOPARD
5.0 out of 5 stars the doll - a fabulous read
I was first alerted to this selection of short stories by a reading on radio 4, and I just had to source the newly published volume . Read more
Published on 6 Jun 2011 by jeanie
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