My Cousin Rachel

  • by Daphne du Maurier
  • Narrated by Jonathan Pryce
  • 11 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Ambrose Ashley, Philip's cousin, guardian, and god, married Rachel in Italy and died there. Jealous of his marriage and grief-stricken by his death, Philip prepares to meet his cousin's widow with hatred in his heart.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Original suspense

After being orphaned, Philip was raised by his older cousin Ambrose Ashley on an estate in Cornwall. As a very young man, Philip learns that the older cousin that he reveres has met and married a widow named Rachel in Florence, Italy. Jealous because of the separation from his cousin Ambrose, his emotions turn to suspicion when letters from Ambrose arrive suggesting that he is ill and that his wife Rachel may actually be harming him. When Philip travels to Florence to investigate, it is too late, and his beloved cousin Ambrose has already died. Rachel has left town. There was no provision in Ambrose's will for Rachel. He has left everything to Philip. Later, Rachel turns up in England and makes a visit. Initially prepared to hate her, Philip at once develops an intense fondness for Rachel. The visit lasts for many months, and Ambrose, too begins to doubt her sincerity. He suspects her of treachery...even of poisoning him, but is still drawn by his affection for her. The central suspense of the story is whether Rachel is an evil conniver or simply a person who is misunderstood, even if exceedingly materialistic and spendthrift. This is a highly engaging story, whose complex, ambiguous characters keep you wondering long after you have finished it. The narration is superb.
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- Everett Leiter

Exstasy and Agony

This is truly a flawless narration of a very flawed novel. Jonathan Pryce's extraordinary talent kept me rapt as this slow motion train wreck story (very very painful to 'watch') reached it's puzzling conclusion.
If I've in any way understood, the novel creates a mystery as to whether Cousin Rachel is a criminal or a saint. The conclusion is that she is neither, of course, and that it is the 'My' in the title that causes all the trouble. It's an excellent thesis, I think, but the problem with the novel is that the narrator/hero is so sweet and suffers so horribly that Rachel becomes completely unsympathetic, regardless of her understanding or intent. The second half is agony and the conclusion hardly satisfying but if you appreciate the vocal gifts of fine English actors, you'll have that to hold on to.
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- Kelley "Lover of ideas who feels no guilt at all about her pleasures."

Book Details

  • Release Date: 03-06-2008
  • Publisher: Audible Studios