An out of practice reader discussing the books I get around to reading.
So I started reading Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier about two weeks ago. It was recommended to me by a professor who though a) I would like it and b) it would help me with my thesis, specifically since I was experimenting with not giving a character a name, much like Du Maurier's protagonist. It's my laundromat book, which means I really only read it when I do laundry, which is at least once a week, so the going's been slow. This is what I have so far.
The style of the writing is very dense. I'm not quite sure whether I like that or not yet. She packs a lot into her descriptions and spends pages just describing a garden or the way a room looks or something like that. Normally such extensive description would turn me off yet it intrigues me in this case, most likely because everything she describes is simply stunning. Her language is very fresh, not very cliche, which perhaps is due to the book being published in the late 30's and so it existed before molds were set. It's sort of like the difference between a normal desk and an incredibly ornate desk made from mahogany with animals carved into the sides and gold filigree put in everywhere. You look at it and you think, wow that's a bit much, but at the same time you're thinking, good god this is gorgeous. So we'll see. Maybe I'll warm up to the style or maybe it'll just irritate me beyond belief. It does make for slow going though.
The nature of the protagonist is very interesting. We don't know her name, what she looks like, or her age other than the fact that she's very young. She's an enigma, a blank slate. I can't picture her at all. Well, that's not quite true. When I try to picture her, I picture a twelve year old boy which is really weird, though I suspect part of that is anxiety I have about my younger brother starting college in the fall. Anywho, I find the nature of the new Mrs. de Winter fascinating. My professor gave me the specific direction of "Think about what it means that she doesn't have a name" and I'm definitely finding a lot of answers to that question. We'll see what the ultimate conclusion is when I finish.
I'm only about a third of the way finished so we'll see how my opinions change by the end. I'm definitely excited to solve the mystery of Rebecca. Laundry day's coming up so we'll see how the story ends.