The blurb from Barnes and Noble:
Philip Ashley’s older cousin Ambrose, who raised the orphaned Philip as his own son, has died in Rome. Philip, the heir to Ambrose’s beautiful English estate, is crushed that the man he loved died so far from home. He is also suspicious. While in Italy, Ambrose fell in love with Rachel, a beautiful English and Italian woman. But the final, brief letters Ambrose wrote hint that his love had turned to paranoia and fear.
Now Rachel has arrived at Philip’s newly inherited estate. Could this exquisite woman, who seems to genuinely share Philip’s grief at Ambrose’s death, really be as cruel as Philip imagined? Or is she the kind, passionate woman with whom Ambrose fell in love? Philip struggles to answer this question, knowing Ambrose’s estate, and his own future, will be destroyed if his answer is wrong.
The Short of It:
A very enjoyable read from start to finish.
I cannot believe that this book was originally published in 1951! I read Rebecca ages ago and loved it but I had never even heard of My Cousin Rachel until just a few months ago. I’m so glad I did.
This is one of those stories where you sort of know how things will play out, but you continue to turn the pages because the characters are so richly drawn and the evil is almost too subtle to pick up that you feel the need to really focus on every line as some little clue might pop up. I just love these types of stories.
Philip is so utterly taken with Rachel that he is incredibly frustrating at times, but the dynamic between to the two characters is so tightly wound, that you just expect him (or her) to snap at any moment. The descriptive details of the estate itself were quite well written. I felt as if I were walking the grounds myself at times.
In the end, it was an incredibly satisfying read and if you haven’t read it, I highly recommend that you pick up a copy soon. I also cannot say enough about the cover of the re-release. It’s stunning.
I won this copy over at Peeking Between The Pages. Thanks Dar!