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Mrs. de Winter Hardcover – 4 Oct 1993

3.3 out of 5 stars 45 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 374 pages
  • Publisher: Sinclair-Stevenson Ltd; 1st edition (4 Oct. 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1856193306
  • ISBN-13: 978-1856193306
  • Product Dimensions: 23.4 x 15.4 x 4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (45 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 593,994 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"Retains all the brooding menace and enigmatic mystery of the original" (Daily Mail)

"The oustanding virtue of Mrs de Winter is the elegance of its style... Susan Hill, winner of both the Somerset Maugham and Whitbread prizes, ignores the lush emotionalism of the original, sacrificing psychological menace for a fresh, modest lyricism which suits both her story and her times...dignified and respectful" (Independent)

"Splendid... A very good ghost story" (Beryl Bainbridge Evening Standard)

"Susan Hill's imagination is a force to be reckoned with" (The Times)

"Done excellently, with professionalism and panache" (Sunday Times) --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Book Description

Rejacketed alongside Air and Angels, The Mist in the Mirror and The Woman in Black to create a set of Susan Hill's most absorbing, enchanting and unsettling backlist titles. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I must confess, I chose to read this book mainly due to the number of terrible reviews it had received, both here and 'across the Pond'. Call me masochistic, but I was curious. Could it really be as bad as all that?
If anything, 'Mrs de Winter' serves the purpose of being a good example of How Not To Write A Novel, never mind a sequel to one of the most beloved classics of 20th century literature. In fact, I would encourage all writers to keep it at hand as a guide; let's see, entire paragraphs held together by comma splices; a complete lack of narrative drive; a storyline that is dependent solely on melodrama and coincidence; a ludicrous and frankly predictable climax, and characters who seem to have experienced a kind of pre-frontal lobotomy since we last saw them, never mind failed to have matured in any way; missing all of the quiet strength, strange empathy and intensely unique personality tics that made du Maurier's original characters so enduring.
What surprises me most is the fact that the author of this sorry piece is Susan Hill, a seasoned writer who is responsible for, among other things, The Woman In Black, an intelligent and hauntingly gothic ghost story that was made into a very successful stage adaptation, and which I had the fortune and pleasure of seeing on tour earlier this year. In other words, there is no excuse for the poor quality of this novel. Undoubtedly Hill has talent, but one would not realise it from reading 'Mrs de Winter'. Was I not aware of Hill's other work, I would have dismissed her as one of those lucky idiots who occasionally slip through the publishing net and manage find an audience for their fanfiction.
I suppose the moral of this story is: sequels are generally a bad idea, unless written by the author of the original work. And even they don't always work out.
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Format: Hardcover
The book reads like a poorly written piece of GCSE coursework..."write what you think happens next and don't forget to include references and quotes from Daphne Du Maurier's book"

The descriptions are endless; I wondered if she was ever going to get to the point. When she did get to the point it wasn't worth waiting for.

The narrator, Mrs De Winter, is irritating beyond belief and Maxim has no substance.

The story is predictable and twee.

All in all, one of the worst books I've read in a long time. Don't waste your money!
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By A Customer on 15 May 2002
Format: Paperback
I struggled to read this book which is a real shame as the original is one of my all time favourites. This was a terribly poor relation to its prequel, it was badly written & got bogged down in far too much detail about the heroine's surroundings which was such tedious reading, unless of course you're a botonist or horticulturalist. I'm not sure whether the tedium was intended to reflect the dull, inspid, insignificant Mrs de Winter who certainly does pale into insigificance compared to her predecssor, whether it was a narrative device or not does not make it any easier reading.
Mrs de Winter is irritating beyond belief I just kept wanting to slap her for being so pathetic; I cannot believe that Maxim could possibly have loved her, I think he pitied her & liked the idea of some gauche, naive girl worshipping him, never questioning him & she was someone he could control as well as be in control of his emotions -in other words she was the antithesis of Rebecca, whereas his first wife had threatened him as well as bring out all the worst aspects of his personality, although I do think his love for her was obsessive and possessive; the claim that he hated her is borne out of the fact that he grew to hate her after he discovered she didn't love him. As for Maxim, the man is a murderer and a brute & terribly unsympathetic. However, I was at least pleased to see justice was served at the end of the book -I skimmed through the last few chapters as I had just had enough - not before time either.
I much preferred Sally Beacham's Rebecca's Tale to this sad offering.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Oh dear - this book was a massive disappointment. Loved 'Rebecca' of course (who wouldn't?) but this was as dull as ditchwater. My advice - give this one a wide swerve and read Sally Beauman's 'Rebecca's Tale' which is fantastic and absolutely won't disappoint!
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Format: Hardcover
Sorry, I can only give this book three stars. Susan Hill is a good writer, and I have enjoyed many of her books, but in my opinion she should have left Rebecca in her troubled grave. It is a boring, lonwinded story, not worthy of either Daphne du Maurier or Susan Hill.
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Format: Paperback
I was surprised at the one star reviews I read here. I recently reread Rebecca after about a thirty year lag, having first read it in high school in the 1970s, and was quite surprised at how dark the novel is on rereading. So I was interested to see what Ms. Hill made of a sequel.

Yes, it is quite dark and disturbing and the ending is beyond sad, but really there was nothing else to be done, in my opinion. The amorality of the second Mrs. DeWinter in Rebecca is astounding and I feel that Hill captured that perfectly in her sequel. None of these people are likable, nor did DuMaurier intend them to be. I would have been deeply offended by a hearts and flowers sequel. Death is the only answer to what went before.

I also appreciated the quality of Hill's writing. It is damned hard for a writer to write in another's voice, but I think Ms. Hill succeeds in replicating DuMaurier here. Both books made me think seriously about love and morals. I have Rebecca's Tale, but never got around to reading it. I am trying to imagine whitewashing a sociopath. I should try to read it and see how Beauman measures up.
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