Reading Jane Austen For The First Time

“It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.”

My reading mood recently has led me to explore classic novels and I have thoroughly enjoyed diving into research mode to put together an ambitious reading list.📚 Outside of my school years, I haven’t read many classics so it is a whole new world. In fact, there was a point where I sincerely thought that classics just simply were not for me, finding myself intimidated by the language or sheer length or both. But these days I find myself in search of new genres, new stories, and new challenges. I knew for sure that I wanted to give the much-loved Jane Austen a read, and after looking into her published works I thought “hmmm, why not read them all??” Each novel sounds quite appealing to me and I am excited to read all of them. I am going to rank them based on my interest in the story and read them in that order. I’m curious to see how my initial ranking will compare to a final ranking after I have completed my Austen journey.

Continue reading “Reading Jane Austen For The First Time”

Jamaica Inn by Daphne du Maurier

BLOG“There’s things happen at Jamaica Inn, Mary, that I’ve never dared to breathe. Bad things. Evil things. I dare not even admit them to myself.”

On a gloomy November evening, Mary Yellan finds herself on the way to Jamaica Inn and into an uncertain future. Her mother’s dying wish was for Mary to find a home with her beloved sister, Aunt Patience. However, upon her arrival Mary is greeted by a crumbling structure that acts as a home to violent acts and dark secrets. Her Aunt Patience is a shadow of the woman she used to be; meek, frightened and at the mercy of her abusive husband. Mary is thrust into the eery environment of her new home and as she slowly uncovers her uncle’s crimes, she gets swept up in the madness. Meanwhile, an unexpected connection and attraction to her uncle’s brother develops, leaving her questioning just who she can trust.

“Dead men tell no tales, Mary.”

I absolutely love Daphne du Maurier’s writing. She creates atmosphere like no other and I cannot help but be completely drawn into whichever story she tells. This is my third du Maurier novel, after Rebecca and My Cousin Rachel, both of which I thoroughly enjoyed, and Jamaica Inn is no exception. As soon as I started reading I was transported to this eerie, unsettling environment and became completely engrossed in Mary’s story. What secrets hide within Jamaica Inn? What will happen to Mary? Who is there to trust? Question after question kept me engaged and the atmosphere was absolutely chilling. The constant air of uncertainty kept me guessing and I was truly not sure where the story would go. There were a couple of sections where I would have preferred a quicker pace and for the story to progress a little faster, but I never wanted to put the book down. Atmospheric and captivating, Jamaica Inn is another must-read Daphne du Maurier novel.

My Cousin Rachel by Daphne du Maurier

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“The point is, life has to be endured, and lived. But how to live it is the problem.”

After reading Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier and falling in love with her writing, I was eager to pick up another one of her books. Alongside Rebecca, My Cousin Rachel seemed to be one of her most well-known novels so it was an easy choice. It is told from the perspective of a young man named Phillip Ashley, whose world is turned upside down following the death of his older cousin, Ambrose. After losing his parents as a child, Phillip was taken in by the wealthy and benevolent Ambrose, who became the most important figure in his life. The two created a somewhat solitary life for themselves, and one with which they were very content with. Upon a trip to Florence, Ambrose does the unexpected by falling in love, getting married, and in an unfortunate turn of events, dying quite suddenly. Pretty soon Amborose’s widow, Rachel shows up in England, and despite his suspicions Phillip can’t help but be drawn to her, even as he questions her hand in the death of Ambrose.  Continue reading “My Cousin Rachel by Daphne du Maurier”

Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier

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“Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again.”

I don’t reach for classics often, if ever, but Rebecca is one of those books that I have been meaning to read for a couple of years now.  It has been recommended to me quite often and there is so much love for this book that I had to see for myself, so when I came across it recently I decided to give it a go. The premise itself is pretty simple; a young woman marries a wealthy older man and upon moving into his mansion, feels haunted by his dead wife, Rebecca.  This alone is interesting enough but Rebecca turned out to be a lot more than I expected. Continue reading “Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier”