All he ever did in life was watch people, never partake in their happiness or pain. No family, no ties, no entanglements, no friends, nothing infinitely precious.
But where John’s life was drearily detached, Jean’s was over-encumbered by the ties John lacked - a warring family, an ailing business, a sordid past.
When they came face to face, Jean could not resist the opportunity to escape the trials of his messy existence. John, driven into the deception, faces the horror of his altar-ego’s careless cruelty as he is drawn helplessly into a web of lies - and of love.
©1957 Daphne du Maurier Browning (P)2011 AudioGO Ltd
Rebecca is still the pinnacle, but this one is excellent. Good story of a "mistaken" identity type that leads to more. Even when DuMaurier is writing more of a Romance type, which this is not, this is more of a mystery story, she is still a very good writer, not clunky like so many now. I have read/listened to many of hers and enjoyed them all, Hungry Hill and Mary Ann being least favorite so far. But I recommend this one to people after Rebecca, and then probably My Cousin Rachael.
If you want car chases look elsewhere, DuMaurier always leans heavily toward the character side and immerses you in her world.
Fascinating story , draws you in, never lets you go. Sorry when it ended. Actor reading it was perfect
I have a DLitt and Phil Degree which must imply a level of discernment? I just clocked over at 60. The significance is that I have read a whole lot of books. I'm now revisiting some of my all time favourites - and enjoying some first time round books. Books are my friends. Audible is JUST AMAZING - takes me back to pre -TV days, with my ear pressed to a crackly transistor radio - but now SO MUCH better and more 'classy' from a Kindle!
It seems impossible that an author could make one believe that a 'doppelganger' could so easily assume the role of another. How does an imposter play the role of father, brother and son, sign papers and so quickly 'know' the detail and history of a whole family? Ask du Maurier... This book could be viewed as bordering on science fiction. But no...the writing skill of this accomplished author makes the whole absurd situation quite believable. The work of a true master spoils the reader - makes one wish she was still alive and writing - to spare one from the modern cardboard characters in unbelievable, absurd situations...This was my second time around with The Scapegoat. I read it 40 years ago - enjoyed it as much now as then. And the narration was EXCELLENT. Vale!
Rating scale: 5=Loved it, 4=Liked it, 3=Ok, 2=Disappointed, 1=Hated it. I look for well developed characters, compelling stories.
A mere spectator in his own life, John encounters Jean, his doppleganger, who is desperately trying to manage his own messy and overwheliming life. Jean escapes, essentially thrusting John into his (Jean's) identity against his will. But to John's surprise, he finds he's pretty good at the deception, and is becoming both facinated and obsessed with the situation. Without tipping his hand, John deftly elicits needed information from family, neighbors and business associates using his wits, his instincts and more than a little luck. Mistakes are made, but explanations are found, most often by those who are being fooled.
DuMaurier goes beyond the conventional Hollywood doubles-exchanging-roles farce, and through John's own thoughts asks us to consider the ethics of interfering with lives without the responsibility of having to live with the consequences. Can he make changes in relationships and family dynamics and still remain an uninvolved spectator? To masquerade as Jean will he have to behave in ways that conflict with his own morals? Can he remain innocent of actions that he performs in the name of another man? John realizes the irony of getting his wish - he finds involvement and connection in his life, but it's not his life. What would be wrong with claiming it anyway since Jean has so obviously given it to him? The resolution of these questions is masterful.
Well written, well read, well recommended.
Researcher/oral historian and fitness enthusiast from Austin, TX, currently residing in San Diego. I love to read, but traditional books require a person to be sedentary while reading. Audio books make it possible for me to increase both my physical activity and reading quantity.
Wonderful, original suspense/mystery! Good performance. du Maurier is the original master of this genre. Hitchcock got it all from her! Well worth the credits/money.
Yes, I have listened to it a couple times and always find it intriguing. Ms. Du Maurier covered all the bases when it came to the pitfalls of one man masquerading as another. the only one she couldn't resolve was the master's dog.
The main character, John, who handled the situation so wisely.
This is one of DuMaurier's best stories and I wish it could be made into a film
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