I picked up this classic alongst several others - all ancient and dusty in a corner of my second han
bookstore. I am so glad I did pick this one up.
I have read practically all of du Maurier's books whilst still schooling but had missed this one out. Like her other books, this too is set in Cornwall and is evocative of a Cornwall past which I will always associate with smugglers, pirates, brandy, pieces of silver, dashing heroes, equally dashing heroines and bleak castles!!! Tell me someone from Cornwall that this hasnt changed please!
The story both historical and romantic is passionate and emphasises the feeling of belonging to a
family or a clan and the importance that this played in people's lives at the time. Honor the chief female star of the story whose life the story evolves around from the time she was a headstrong little girl to the 18 year old who turns a general's head, and who continues to do so till the end of his days. How the story turns from normal to tragic and our heroine now becomes a cripple whilst still being a teenager and despite this - where everything indicates that her life is almost over (considering the period the story is set in) still manages to turn the general's head and lead what would be considered a most indiscreet, "fast" life whilst living with her family has to be actually read to be understood.
I found the story telling as fascinating as the history of the period which involved a long troubled period in British history - where Parliament and King were divided and how a war not just decimated its people but also successfully ruined the economy of the country.
Although not a traditional happily ever after story, (we are dealing here with people who are most untraditional of the times!), this story was beautiful and you should really read this book. I have liked Daphne du Maurier all this time, but now I have fallen in love!!! A simply unputdownable book.
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