The House on the Strand by Daphne du Maurier Review

The House on the Strand by Daphne du Maurier
The House on the Strand by Daphne du Maurier, ISBN 9781844080427, 329pp

Last October I asked my husband for a whole stack of Daphne du Maurier books for my birthday. I’ve been reading my way through them slowly, discovering old favourites I haven’t read for years, as well as Daphne du Maurier books I previously knew nothing about. The House on the Strand is one of those books I knew little about before reading. I went in without expectations and was pleasantly surprised by this novel. It’s a time travel book, but written in such an original way. I found it fascinating. It has firmly cemented Daphne du Maurier in my eyes as an author who was the master of any genre. Continue reading

My Cousin Rachel by Daphne du Maurier Review

My Cousin Rachel by Daphne du Maurier review
My Cousin Rachel by Daphne du Maurier, ISBN 9781844080403, 335pp

My Cousin Rachel by Daphne du Maurier is a book I’ve been wanting to read for a long time. As part of my quest to read more Daphne du Maurier books this year, I finally got around to reading it.

The story is written from the perspective of Philip Ashley, a young man on the cusp of turning twenty-five who has a lot to learn about the world and a lot of maturing to do. Philip was raised by his cousin, Ambrose, after the death of his parents, and grows up on a beautiful estate in Cornwall. But Ambrose suffers from ill-health so must spend the winter months over in Italy where it’s warm. Continue reading

Frenchman’s Creek by Daphne du Maurier Review

Frenchman's Creek by Daphne du Maurier review
Frenchman’s Creek by Daphne du Maurier, ISBN 9780349006598, 272 pp

Frenchman’s Creek by Daphne du Maurier is my first read of 2019. I read this a long time ago, so was happy to do a re-read as I had forgotten most of the plot. I’m so glad that I read this again as it was a fantastic read which I enjoyed so much.

Frenchman’s Creek is a rollicking, swashbuckling adventure set during the Restoration period in England. Lady Dona St Columb, the mother of two small children, is fed up with the shallow life she leads at Court. She is known for being a daring woman who drinks with her husband, his friends and their mistresses and is known to engage in wild escapades. Continue reading

The King’s General by Daphne du Maurier Review

The King's General by Daphne du Maurier review
The King’s General by Daphne du Maurier, ISBN 9781844080892, 372pp

My husband bought me a whole stack of Daphne du Maurier books for my birthday. Over the years I’ve read Rebecca, Jamaica Inn and Frenchman’s Creek by Daphne du Maurier. But I wanted to read more of her books. The King’s General is set in 17th century Cornwall during the time of the English Civil War. Even though this book is called The King’s General, and he features as a character in the novel, the story is told from the point-of-view of Honor Harris.

When Honor is eighteen she is passionate, beautiful, reckless and the spoiled youngest daughter of a large family. She reminded me a bit of Scarlett O’Hara from Gone With the Wind. Honor meets Sir Richard Grenville, a soldier who cares only for fighting and not about the feelings of those around him. Richard is a bit like Rhett Butler, only meaner, and he is dedicated to fighting for his king. He’s really not a likeable person but is a brilliant soldier. When Richard meets Honor something clicks. Her family is against any match between them and sends Honor home. Richard follows her and they meet in secret and eventually become engaged.

But then tragedy strikes days before their wedding and Honor sends Richard away. I won’t tell you what the tragedy is but it’s a good twist and changes Honor’s life forever. It’s rare to find a novel told from the point-of-view of a person in her situation. Continue reading

Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier Review

Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier review
Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier, ISBN 9781844080380, 441pp

I just re-read Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier for the first time in a long time and it’s still an amazing read. It made me into a Daphne du Maurier fangirl all over again. Sometimes when I re-read a book I feel differently about it but with this book I was left with so much appreciation of Daphne du Maurier’s skill as a writer. Rebecca is truly a masterful piece of writing. It’s easy to see why this book has become a classic that has never gone out of print. Continue reading

One Lovely Blog Award and The Versatile Blogger Award

I’ve been a bit slack acknowledging a few award nominations. The reason for the delay was because I had just recently been nominated for some awards and I wanted to space out my posts a little bit. The best thing about receiving nominations is being able to acknowledge blogs you enjoy.

The very lovely Lea at Sea and Literary Tiger both nominated me for the One Lovely Blog Award. Thank you so much. I really enjoy reading both your blogs.

The rules:
• Link back to the blogger who nominated you.
• Paste the award image on your blog.
• Tell 7 facts about yourself.
• Nominate 15 other blogs that you would like to give the award to. (I’m going to reduce this number.)
Contact the bloggers that you have chosen and let them know about the award.

I’d like to nominate the following blogs for the One Lovely Blog Award because they truly are lovely – word-wise, visually and I just love their writing styles. If you are looking for new blogs to follow, check these blogs out:

1001 Children’s Books 
Bitsnbooks 
Emeline Morin
The Book Jotter

Seven Facts About Me
I must be boring because I’ve run out of 7 things to say about myself. So I thought I would recommend 7 books that I like.

1. Frenchman’s Creek by Daphne du Maurier is a lovely read. Daphne du Maurier is one of my favourite ‘classic’ authors. Dona, a rich and bored English housewife, is staying at her husband’s estate in Cornwall and discovers that a boatload of French pirates have been using a creek on the property as their hide-out. What’s Dona to do? Fall in love with the French captain, disguise herself as a cabin boy, and go out on a raid with them. But then Dona’s absent husband comes to visit … Also check out Jamaica Inn by the same author.
2. Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett is an epic fictional saga about the building of a cathedral in 12th century England. It also explores the lives of people during this time – from stone masons to wool merchants. This book encouraged me to go and see some of Europe’s most famous cathedrals.
3. The Bronze Horseman by Paullina Simons is one of my favourite ‘romantic’ reads. This is book one in a trilogy about Tatiana and Alexander, two young Russians who meet in Leningrad during World War Two and fall in love. Alexander is an officer in the Red Army – and it turns out he is also the boyfriend of Tatiana’s sister, Dasha. Cue star-crossed, war-crossed lovers and plenty of drama and angst.
4. North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell is a classic read set in 19th century England. It explores the great divide between the agricultural south and industrial north. Margaret Hale moves with her parents from the tranquil green south to the northern town of Milton. Her father, a clergyman, has given up his parsonage and turns to teaching workers. One of his students is John Thornton, a Cotton Mill owner and a self-made man. Margaret dislikes him and his uncouth ways on sight. She likes him even less as she starts to make friends among his ‘poor’ factory workers. Amid a backdrop of strikes and owners verses workers, Margaret and John clash over social issues. Little do they know that their fates are soon to change …
5. Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell is one of my favourite books. Was there ever a more selfish character than Scarlett O’Hara? But for all her faults, she is a character you can’t help but admire. And Rhett Butler is perfect as a scoundrel with a conscience. I also love all the historical detail about the American Civil War. It made it so much easier to study this period of history in high school after reading this book.
6. The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis was one of my favourite series when I was a kid. I thought it was so cool that there was a fantastical world that could be reached through a wardrobe and I loved Aslan the lion. It was interesting to read this series again as an adult and interpret the books in a whole different way. This series fired my imagination then and still does now.
7. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte is a story that never bores me. I will gladly watch all the different TV and film adaptations. It seems like the classic Cinderella story – a poor, plain governess catches the eye of her employer the very rich, eccentric, Mr Rochester. The two fall in love despite all social barriers. But then comes the big twist in the story. (I wish I had read this for the first time and not known about the twist.)

The Versatile Blogger Award
Thank you to Amanda at amandameetsbook for nominating me for The Versatile Blogger Award. This is my 2nd time accepting this award.

The rules are:
• Thank the person who gave you this award. (Thanks Amanda!)
• Include a link to their blog. (Done)
• Next, select 15 blogs/bloggers that you’ve recently discovered or follow regularly.
• Nominate those 15 bloggers for the Versatile Blogger Award.
• Finally, tell the person who nominated you 7 things about yourself. (Please see 7 things about me in the post above.)

As I already nominated some great blogs at the start of this post, I will just nominate a handful of blogs that I have recently discovered. They are all a fantastic read.

The nominees for The Versatile Blogger Award are:

The Adventures of Me
The Bookworm Chronicles 
Dating for Dinner