The iron of the bridge felt hot under my hand. The sun had been upon it all day. Gripping hard with my hands I lifted myself on to the bar and gazed down steadily on the water passing under ...I thought of places I would never see, and women I should never love. A white sea breaking on a beach, the slow rustle of a shivering tree, the hot scent of grass ...I breathed deeply and I felt as though the waiting water rose up in front of me and would not let me go' As far as his father, an accomplished poet, is concerned, Richard will never amount to anything, and so he decides to take his fate into his own hands. But at the last moment, he is saved by Jake, who appeals to Richard not to waste his life. Together they set out for adventure, jumping aboard the the first ship they see and working their passage to Norway and around Europe, eventually to bohemian Paris, where Richard meets Hesta, a captivating music student ...
Daphne du Maurier (1907-89) was born in London, the daughter of the famous actor-manager Sir Gerald du Maurier and granddaughter of George du Maurier, the author and artist. In 1931 her first novel, The Loving Spirit, was published. A biography of her father and three other novels followed, but it was the novel Rebecca that launched her into the literary stratosphere and made her one of the most popular authors of her day. In 1932, du Maurier married Major Frederick Browning, with whom she had three children. Many of du Maurier's bestselling novels and short stories were adapted into award-winning films, including Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds and Nicolas Roeg's Don't Look Now. In 1969 du Maurier was awarded a DBE. She lived most of her life in Cornwall, the setting for many of her books.
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