©1941 Daphne du Maurier; (P)1986 BBC Audiobooks Ltd
I've loved this book for years (so I may not be impartial!) A cross between a Historical romance and an introspective novel, Frenchman's Creek is set during the English Restoration period. The story line has a dreamy quality to it that was enhanced by the narration.
The quick gist of the book: Lady Dona, married with 2 children, but dissatisfied, frustrated, and unhappy with herself and her life, leaves London for rural Devon. Intending to take the time to re-evaluate her life and its purpose, she is unaware that her estate has been the hideout of a notorious French pirate, Jean Benoit Aubrey. Inevitably, the two meet, and have a profound impact on one another. Frenchman's creek is a refuge for both Dona and her pirate, but for different reasons. Ultimately, it comes to symbolize peace and self respect for Lady Dona.
I am a big fan of Daphne Du Maurier. I was disappointed at the beginning and well into it for 2 of the 8+ hours as it was slow and like a romance novel anyone could have written. However, I stuck with it and it was worth it. It picks up in the middle and becomes more intrigue and surprise that Du Maurier is known for. Good Du Maurier book. Excellent Narrator.
I would not purchase another book by du Maurier. BUT, if John Castle is available, he should be engaged to narrate more (and better) books.
V. Woolf - The Voyage Out
He does a wonderful job. I don't think I would have listened to the entire book if anyone else was the narrator. As was the case re. his narration of Vanity Fair, the level of drama, the accents of various characters, etc. - all perfect.
This is one of my favorite books. I am not a romance novel lover by nature but this is one that many would enjoy. The reader does an excellent job drawing you into the story. You find yourself lost on an estate hidden from the world with the lovely Lady Donna and the mysterious French Pirate that "vacations" on her land. If you would like to have a good read that will carry you away on an adventure and make you think in the end this is the book for you.
The narration was wonderful and suited to the writing. The writing was so much more lyrical than I expected and made me want to hear every word. I will listen to this again. The story/plot is not complicated or complex but the writing makes you want to keep listening and the ending is not what I expected. Both du Maurier fans and romance readers will love this book.
Yes, yes, yes. Castle's voice was melodic, perfectly timed with just the right inflections. Best reading of any book I have listened to. I knew when I heard his voice that I would love the book.
And the story is about finding life - a magnificent love story.
Both Donna, the heroine and the Frenchman. He captured her aloofness and reserve as well as her abandon. The accent of the Frenchman was superb.
Oh yes and I almost did. I listened to it in the car, at the YMCA working out, in the kitchen cooking dinner, and in bed before turning out the lights just so that I could finish it. It was lovely.
After reading Rebecca, My Cousin Rachel, and several short stories, I have become a big fan. Maybe I expected too much, but this book seems to fall short of her other works. Great narration, though.
"A pure delight"
The most delightful love story. Beautifully written, in typical Du Maurier style. Searching for this book on line eventually brought me to 'Audible", as although i knew "Frenchman's Creek" existed in this format, unabridged and read by John Castle, it seemed impossible to buy. Now i am quietly working my way through the Audible Du Maurier library. Frenchman's Creek is one of Du Maurier's shorter novels, and leaves the reader/listener longing for more, but there really is not one word too few or too many. It will make you want to visit Cornwall at the next possible opportunity, as is the case in many of her novels. This one, however, has charm, romance, and a little bit of comedy, all wrapped up in the same short book. If you have never read anything by Daphne du Maurier, i suggest you start with this. You will definitely look for more.
"So excited that this is on audio"
I waited a long time for this particular Daphne Du Maurier. You can almost taste the salt in the air, and hear the birds calling. Well written, well narrated and wonderfully evocative, a true love story. A must for any lover of well written books.
This slim book is Daphne du Maurier writing in glorious romantic style with an undercurrent of real sadness. She weaves in her own ambiguity about being female, the nature of love and the role of a mother, all of which profoundly affect the mood and plot.
I have always read the book hoping for a change in the ending but, after listening, I now know why it had to be.
John Castle's voice is a delicious as the romance. I imagined the narrator would be a woman but his narration is the perfect choice and he wrings the essence out of this story. A shame it is so brief because I didn't want it to end - the reason it only has four stars!
I found myself making excuses to walk for longer than needed just to spend more time listening to this. Wonderful book, du Maurier really is an under-rated author who deserves much acclaim.
The reading was excellent, but it seemed too long.) Again, I don't want to say more, but you won't let me preview unless I add something!)
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