©1941 Daphne du Maurier; (P)2014 Audible, Inc.
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.
"Daphne de Maurier at her best."
I would highly recommended this audio book. I love this story. I think it is one of Daphne de Maurier's best. I just think she speak so much of humanity and of her own wrestles with sexuality in a time of conformity. I have listened to this audio book three times now. The performance is excellent- really enchanting. You just can't stop listening. Just a wonder. Don't miss it!
"The nearest I will get to time travel"
Daphne du Maurier writes beautifully, about Cornwall, about people and about the past. But what a revelation the narrator, John Castle, was. I can't imagine a finer narrator. His voice changed so subtly to portray the different characters very vividly. I listened to this book as though it were a film playing in my head. I could see them all. The pace was excellent, and it unusually had larger gaps of silence between chapters, which I really liked. The story is so beautiful, I highly recommend this download. It was a joy from start to finish. If only John Castle had narrated more du Maurier....or more anything.
"Escape into a world of adventure and romance..."
Yes, yes, and yes. What a moving story! The first thing I thought after I finished was that this was rather like The Bridges of Madison County - a woman is married to someone and has children with him, but her true love comes later and she must ultimately decide between her family and her lover.
If someone like me - a person who studies 17th-century piracy - can get swept away by Aubery, I don't know who wouldn't. I want to go on La Mouette with him and sail into the sunset. All the characters are delightfully created and although I had a strong dislike of Dona in the beginning, I soon warmed to her (which I think was the intention). It didn't take long to warm to the Frenchman - crikey! What a character. I absolutely loved this book, which I am sure I'll reread again because it is such a treasure.
Every scene in which Dona was with Aubery. Wow.
As for me, I hope John Castle has recorded a lot more because he was absolutely PHENOMENAL in his reading - every single character came to life so perfectly. The man is superb.
Yes, but I could only manage to listen to it in chunks - so that took a week. I wanted to listen to it straight through!
If you love historical fiction set in the 17th-century (or in any time period), adventure and romance - don't miss this book!
"first read at school nearly fifty years ago!"
It has not diminished in the intervening years. a powerful love story highly recommend! Wonderfully performed, evocative of Cornwall
"Very good read."
Entertaining novel much enhanced by excellent narration.Having already
read the book I found the audio version much more interesting,it really brings the characters to life but I think much of this is due to brilliance of the narration.
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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