31 Shots of Shock: #19 – ‘Don’t Look Now’ by Daphne Du Maurier

31 Shots of Shock *Title: Don’t Look Now by Daphne Du Maurier
Date Read: 19 October 2009
Available Online?: NO
Briefly: Still raw from the death of their young daughter to meningitis, a married couple spend some time in Venice to help cope with their lose. Everything seems to be going well until a pair of mysterious aged twins reveal a secret to the wife. It’s a secret that at first brings comfort, before it evolves into something very different.
Afterthoughts: This is the first time I’ve read Daphne Du Maurier, and it certainly won’t be the last. There’s a certain easy reading eloquence to du Maurier’s prose, which is a delight to engage with. This story’s not chilling in a graphic sense, and it’s certainly not scary in a full-on sense either. Rather this is a ‘slow burner’, which definitely makes the reader’s hairs at the back of the neck stand up on end. I’m now keen on tracking down and watching the 1973 movie adaptation of this story, which stars Donald Sutherland and Julie Christie. Apparently a huge hit of the 1970s.
Notable Quote: He looked up, over his glass of wine, and the woman was staring at him again. It was not the casual, idle glance of someone at a nearby table, waiting for her companion to return, but something deeper, more intent, the prominent, light blue eyes oddly penetrating, giving him a sudden feeling of discomfort. Damn the woman! All right, bloody stare, if you must. Two can play at that game. He blew a cloud of cigarette smoke into the air and smiled at her, he hoped offensively. She did not register. The blue eyes continued to hold his, so that he was obliged to look away himself, extinguish his cigarette, glance over his shoulder for the waiter and call for the bill.

Rating: ★★★★½

*Story read as part of my 31 Shots of Shock reading challenge.

About Rob

Rob, a self-confessed bibliophile, is without any hope of rehabilitation. He gets unnaturally excited over anything book-shaped, and if book sniffing were a crime then he would have been locked up years ago (which wouldn’t bother him in the slightest provided his cell was lined with books).