The Doll: The Lost Short Stories

The Doll: The Lost Short Stories

by Daphne du Maurier


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“Du Maurier is in a class by herself.”
New York Times

Perhaps best known for her immortal gothic masterwork Rebecca—the basis for the Academy Award-winning motion picture directed by Alfred Hitchcock—Daphne de Maurier began her illustrious writing career penning short stories. In The Doll, thirteen of du Maurier’s early shorter fictional works have been collected—each story written before the author’s twenty-third birthday and some in print for the first time since the 1930s. Compelling tales of human foibles and tragic romance, the stories in The Doll represent the emergence of a remarkable literary talent who later went on to create Jamaica Inn, The Birds, and other classic works. This breathtaking collection of short fiction belongs on the bookshelf of every Daphne du Maurier fan.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062080349
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 11/22/2011
Edition description: Original
Pages: 224
Sales rank: 326,145
Product dimensions: 5.20(w) x 7.80(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Daphne du Maurier (1907–1989) has been called one of the great shapers of popular culture and the modern imagination. Among her more famous works are The Scapegoat, Jamaica Inn, Rebecca, and the short story "The Birds," all of which were subsequently made into films—the latter three directed by Alfred Hitchcock.

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The Doll: The Lost Short Stories 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 13 reviews.
JoLynnsbooks on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Daphne Du Maurier is known as a writer who can create suspenseful atmosphere and twisted characters. This book of short stories from her youth does not disappoint on either count. Yes, a few of the stories are unpolished or overblown ( A Difference in Temperament,The Doll), but there are also some real treasures here. 'And Now to God the Father' and 'Picadilly' are brilliant studies of depressing characters. 'The Limpet' is an astonishing tale of a woman (reminiscent of Elizabeth Taylor's Angel), insinuating herself and meddling to disastrous effect with the lives of everyone in her path. Thankfully, there is sly comic relief to be found in a few of these tales as a contrast to the cynical, oppressive mood of the majority. Recommended for Du Maurier fans and those who love an unexpected twist in their short stories.
Beamis12 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
As always Du Maurier's writing is extremely atmospheric. Some of these stories are ironic, some are very dark and some such as "The Doll' are very chilling. Definitely could have given Stephen King a run for his money had they been writing and publishing during the same time period.
TheLostEntwife on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I don¿t know which short story to gush about in this review. From the creepy, ick factor of the book¿s title story, The Doll, to the heartbreaking loss experienced in East Wind, to the funny, but bittersweet tale of Frustration¿ I could go on and on.I think one story though really got to me. I loved them all for their tragic, gothic-like settings, stories and people.. but there is one story that is all letters that move from the thrilling moments of a new, forbidden love to the eventual falling away of the same. This is a repeated theme in these short stories ¿ there¿s no hugely romantic gestures, just simple, every day life laid bare and man¿s shortcomings exposed in all sorts of heartbreaking detail.I know, however, that this is one of the best collections of short stories I¿ve read. I can say this because this tiny little book inspires me to try my own hand at short stories, even though they¿ll be no where near as perfect as du Maurier¿s. Still.. these stories have shown me the endless possibilities that can be reached with just a few pages of story ¿ and how much wealth there is in a backstory and future that are left untold.
Liz1564 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book was an Early Reviewers copy. Thank you.These short stories by du Maurier were all written before she was 25 years old and they could be used as a blueprint to show how a very talented young writer learns her craft. They are filled with passion, less than subtle character depth, and plots which contain the seeds for her later, powerful canon.."East Wind", written when she was 18, is a portrait of an isolated island and what happens when some shipwrecked sailors intrude into the lives of the inhabitants. The plot is predictable with a nod to the more sensational pulp fiction, but the descriptions of the power of nature are as good as any in her later books. Likewise, the creepy horror of the title story has a feel of Poe about it. The vicar who is uncompromisingly worldly and the terrible heroine who manipulates the lives of everyone she meets are too easy to dislike. There is nothing to redeem them , but these stereotypes will evolve into multi-layered characters in the years ahead. Even more interesting are her tales of the dynamics between lovers: the progress of a love affair revealed in the letters of the man; the end of love during a romantic weekend which becomes very wet; a woman who loses the interest of her lover because her suddenly lovely young daughter returns from school abroad;; and a funny little tale of two frustrated young lovers dealing with comic mishaps on their honeymoon.Finally, there is "The Happy Valley." A young woman keeps dreaming of a house in a valley by the sea. When she stumbles across it on her honeymoon, is the house real or is it haunted or just an ordinary house that is for sale? Here is the setting for REBECCA.I am very glad that these stories, many not in print since their initial publication in 1930's magazines, have been reissued. They show the growth of a great writer and, more important, are very enjoyable reads.
laytonwoman3rd on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This collection of early short stories by Daphne du Maurier was engaging to read, but you can easily see the author-in-training at work. A favorite theme here is the doomed relationship in which communication fails and neither party quite understands why. From the first few paragraphs of ¿A Difference in Temperament¿ or ¿Frustration¿ it is quite apparent how each tale will end. Likewise with ¿Nothing Hurts for Long¿. The ¿twist¿ at the end of ¿Tame Cat¿ will not surprise anyone, but watching du Maurier work toward it is fun, nevertheless. Her talent for making the skin crawl is nurtured in the title tale, and more subtly displayed in ¿The Happy Valley¿. Working backward from some of these stories, I could imagine the prompt of a Creative Writing teacher that might have been their starting point. The best of the lot is the final selection in the volume, titled ¿The Limpet¿. It is not one of the very young Daphne¿s early efforts (most of the other stories in this collection were written between 1926 and 1932), but was published in 1959. It is clearly the work of a more seasoned and mature writer who has learned how to make herself much less visible in her final product. For the most part these stories are extremely well-crafted. One or two of them are quite artistic as well. Definitely worth reading if you are a) a fan of Daphne du Maurier or b) a student of the art.
Cariola on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Harper has put together a unique collection of stories written and published by Daphne du Maurier before the age of twenty-three. While there is certainly some fine writing here, and some of the stories give glimpses of what's to come (eerie settings, mysterious characters, threatening natural world), I doubt that they would have much appeal to readers not already the author's fans. That said, the strong point of the collection is du Maurier's insights into human psychology, a major factor in the success of her later novels. Many of the stories depict our tendency to misinterpret words and events, jumping to conclusions dangerous to relationships between lovers, parent and child, friends and new acquaintances.
MrsLee on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
These were not the type of stories I was hoping for. I have another collection of du Maurier short stories which are full of suspense, and I was hoping for more of the same, but the only story which came close was "The Happy Valley." Most of the rest are excellent studies on some of our darker personality traits and relationship killers. Very depressing stuff. One, "Frustration," was funny and reminded me of an O'Henry tale, another, "The Limpet," was excellent and a great portrayal of a manipulative personality. Other than those, these stories did not have much appeal for me, though they might appeal to others.
jaimjane on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Daphne Du Maurier's earlier work focuses on the study of failed human relationships, especially of the male/female variety. Having read so many of her later books, it is interesting to see the literary roads that took her there. I enjoyed this collection very much and spent two very pleasant days reading. The weirdest story was The Doll. It was a creepy look at a fetish that is used nowadays as comedy. It showed that Du Maurier was definitely not afraid to delve into the darker, ickier aspects of humanity. And Now To God the Father was a disturbing story of hypocrisy in a social climbing clergyman. Tame Cat had a lovely, innocent young lady coming home from school to find a cold mother and her long time lover making passes at her. Mazie is a day in the life of a prostitute. However, not all of the stories were glum. Weekend and Frustration had a lighter, more comic tone and I laughed out loud at the end of Frustration. If you are a Du Maurier fan you need to have this book in your collection.
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ACDCGIRL More than 1 year ago
I have a friend who just loves Daphne du Maurier and you should have seen her eyes when she opened this! I'm sure it is a great book for du Maurier lovers!