Sunday, 3 August 2008

Catching up...

Here I am with my dog Molly, on the edge of the Menabilly estate in Cornwall. The woods are behind me -- and hidden there is Rebecca's path to the sea. For anyone who's read my book, the little cottage in the woods that my narrator stumbles across is close to this spot -- but again, it's completely hidden by the trees. You'd have to trespass on the estate to find it, and I don't recommend that; though I did stay there legitimately when I was researching the book (I hasten to add!). It also happens to be the cottage where the previous inhabitants were the inspiration for the sisters in 'Don't Look Now' -- a blind psychic and her companion, who lived here when du Maurier was still in residence at Menabilly. It's a beautiful, eerie place...
'Daphne' is being published in the US tomorrow, and there is an interesting piece about it -- and du Maurier herself -- that has just been published in the Wall Street Journal. The writer describes my book as "a spirited but tender fictionalisation of her life" -- which seems to me a very nice thing to say, on all counts.
Speaking of journalism, while I've been in Cornwall, a piece I wrote about J.M Barrie has appeared in the Sunday Telegraph, and a couple of people have posted on the blog, suggested that I do a link to it... Hope you enjoy it.

11 comments:

booklover said...

I loved your book, it’s one of those that you’re annoyed at when you finish because you know it will take at least three months to search for another book so fulfilling. It is beautiful, haunting, enchanting… all those words I‘m sure reviewers have used.

But what made it especially moving was that after you put the book down for the last time you felt that both Daphne and Branwell would feel that justice was served to both their legacies.

I’d like to wish you all the best in your new projects - because it’s going to be soooo hard to beat the modern day classic? Daphne.

Justine Picardie said...

Thank you so much for this lovely, generous message. It's all that a writer could ask for -- a warm response from an intelligent reader. You've made my day!

oxford-reader said...

Hello, welcome back! Hope you had a good and relaxing holiday.
I read your article on J.M. Barrie whilst lounging in a Dartington deckchair, and was thoughroughly fascinated. Also have since been compelled to find my own (cheaper) version of those Chanel shoes you metioned in another article... there's a pic on my blog!
Anyway, hope America loves your book just as much as I do!

Justine Picardie said...

Thanks, Becca. Sorry I didn't see you at Dartington -- it was a flying visit (literally, I just got there in time for my talk, and left straight afterwards, back to Cornwall). Did you enjoy Dartington? Were you there for a few days? It's such a beautiful place, isn't it? I had no idea how lovely that house and gardens are...

HelenMH said...

Welcome back! That's a great photo. Menabilly must be such a magical place.

Justine Picardie said...

Thanks Helen. I've got more photos of the woods and footpaths around Menabilly, which I'll post tomorrow.

oxford-reader said...

I was there from Saturday to Wednesday and would have been there for the whole ten days if I hadn't had to go to Norwich to graduate! I think my bank balance is eternally grateful that I had to leave.
The house and garden are really magical - so many places to lose oneself and just sit peacefully!
It was a shame we didn't get to chat, but it was good to hear you speak on the book again.
My rain curse lifted too - the weather for that day was just perfect!

Gondal-girl said...

Welcome back. lovely image Justine, I think I need a dog! Look forward to seeing some more.

Bront√ęBlog Adm. said...

Welcome back, Justine! What a lovely picture! I did read with interest your piece on J.M.Barrie after having read about that book elsewhere (can't remember), where the reviewer loathed this new book.

I did manage to finally get myself a copy of Andre Birkin's bio of J.M. Barrie so it's just now a matter of actually reading it.

Cristina.

Justine Picardie said...

Oxford-reader -- congratulations on graduating!
Gondal-girl -- more dog pictures to follow shortly...
Cristina -- nice to hear from you. The Andrew Birkin biography is excellent: very moving and evocative...

brigitte said...

I wonder if this is the cottage i am booked into next week? Is it 'Keepers Cottage', I sincerely hope so.
I have read and loved your 'Daphne',it was a memorable book, of which there are too few nowadays. One of those books it will be a pleasure to return to. In fact, I think I will take it on holiday next week, to 'Keepers Cottage', Menabilly!