Friday, 4 August 2017

Book Review: My Cousin Rachel by Daphne Du Maurier

Title: My Cousin Rachel
Author: Daphne Du Maurier
Publisher: Virago
Publication Date: 2017 (1951)
Pages: 352
Format: Paperback
Genre: Historical Fiction
Source: Won in a Giveaway

Orphaned at an early age, Philip Ashley is raised by his benevolent older cousin, Ambrose. Resolutely single, Ambrose delights in Philip as his heir, a man who will love his grand home as much as he does himself. But the cosy world the two construct is shattered when Ambrose sets off on a trip to Florence. There he falls in love and marries--and there he dies suddenly. Jealous of his marriage, racked by suspicion at the hints in Ambrose's letters, and grief-stricken by his death, Philip prepares to meet his cousin's widow with hatred in his heart.Despite himself, Philip is drawn to this beautiful, sophisticated, mysterious Rachel like a moth to the flame. And yet... might she have had a hand in Ambrose's death? (Goodreads Synopsis)

I read a few of Du Maurier's novels back in my late teens, but not this one. Therefore, I am only coming to it after having seen the new film adaptation. I loved the film and, reading the book now, I believe it was a pretty thoughtful and faithful adaptation. One thing I love about this story is the ambiguity. Philip is a completely unreliable narrator, so we never really learn the truth about Rachel and, like Philip, are left to form our own opinions. It is a captivating character study and the book gripped me from start to finish even though I already knew the plot from the film. Rebecca remains my favourite Du Maurier work but My Cousin Rachel now comes in a close second.


  1. Hi Nicki,

    Like yourself I only read a couple of Daphne Du Maurier books back in my teenage years and 'Rebecca' is the obvious one which will always be in the forefront of my memory.

    Having read your post, I checked out the author on Goodreads and had no idea that I had missed out on so many great titles, this one included.

    I love your featured version of the cover art too and I shall definitely be looking to get my hands on a copy of both book and film.

    Thanks for the feature :)


    1. Hope you'll enjoy both when you get them. Thanks for stopping by.

  2. OOOOOOH!!!! I loved this book! But then again, I love Daphne du Maurier. Can't wait to see the movie, recently finished the book. Here's my review:

    1. Glad you enjoyed it too. Hope you'll like the film when you get to see it.