Tuesday, June 17, 2008

House On The Strand

This story is a typical Daphne du Maurier, author of Rebecca. The main character, Dick Young, is invited to stay at friend and physicist Magnus Lane's home in Cornwall. In exchange, Lane convinces Dick to participate in an experiment involving a drug that can transport one to the distant past. Dick soon is able to enter the landscape of the past, at least mentally. His body remains in the present. This causes all kinds of problems as he interacts with the past and his body continues to interact with the present. Problems ensue as Dick's wife and step sons observe increasingly bizarre behavior and his declining health. The drug creates a strong addiction and pull to the past that Dick cannot deny.

The story is a bit strange and perhaps a product of the time it was written, 1960's. The idea that a drug can transport one to the past is a bit of a stretch, yet the effects of drug use are clearly evident. As with other du Maurier stories the mystery is left unexplained. Did he really travel to the past? The reader is left to decide on their own.

The story is a bit slow to develop. Stick with it and you might enjoy it. In any event, I wouldn't mark it as a must read even though many label this book as one of du Maurier's more notable novels.

Book Rating: 3 Stars

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