"PERHAPS THE GREATEST ROMANTIC SUSPENSE NOVEL EVER WRITTEN"
DU MAURIER, Daphne. Rebecca. London: Victor Gollancz, 1938. Octavo, original black cloth, original dust jacket. $5500.
First edition of du Maurier's best and most famous novel, a Haycraft-Queen Cornerstone mystery, and basis for the Oscar-winning 1940 Hitchcock film starring Laurence Olivier.
"'Last night I dreamt I went to Manderlay again.' The opening line of perhaps the greatest romantic suspense novel ever written has become as familiar to readers as 'Call me Ishmael' from Moby-Dick" (Penzler, Crown, 26). Rebecca has been singled out by Haycraft Queen as a Cornerstone mystery, and chosen by Mystery Writers of America as number nine in the Top 100 Mystery Novels of All Time. The novel proved to critics that "Du Maurier is in a class by herself" (New York Times); her "masterful treatment" of the Gothic tale "made Rebecca a classic book… by far the best known of du Maurier's work" (Steinbrunner & Penzler, 136). For the Oscar-winning adaptation by Hitchcock in 1940, in which "the film like the novel is wonderfully tense," Hays Office censors "demanded removal of the novel's heart-the fact that Maxim (Laurence Olivier) has murdered Rebecca-so that he would not go unpunished for a crime" (Tibbetts & Welsh, 347). Without scarce Book Society belly band. Hubin, 128. Reilly, 510.
Book with inner paper hinge split, light wear to cloth, mild toning to spine; scarce dust jacket bright and exceptional with only slightest soiling, minor toning. A desirable copy.