Tuesday, March 24, 2009

The Scapegoat

The Scapegoat The Scapegoat by Daphne du Maurier

Book 27 of 100 for the 100+ Reading Challenge

rating: 4 of 5 stars

John is an Englishman, who is a professor of French history. He is a solitary person, and wishes he had deeper interpersonal relationships. While on vacation in France, he meets Jean who looks and sounds identical to himself. After a few drinks, Jean convinces John to go to a seedy hotel, where he drugs him and takes everything he owns. When John wakes up, he decides to take on Jean's life as the head of a prominent family in a provincial village.

I really enjoyed this book because it is so different to what I normally read. I did have to suspend my disbelief that John could actually fool Jean's mother, wife, child, and lovers. But the book is a voyeuristic exploration of those little fantasies in the back of my head about what it would be like to become a completely different person. What would it be like to live someone else's life?

Some elements of the story were a little predictable, but I even enjoyed watching (and cringing!) at how those came to fruition. The ending was a tad disappointing, but I was thoroughly gripped by the story until I turned the final page.

Books like this should still be in print! Daphne du Maurier writes beautifully haunting works.


bermudaonion said...

That does sound like a good one. I don't mind suspending belief while I read.

charley said...

This sounds interesting. I'd also like to read Rebecca.

Anonymous said...

I recently came accross your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I dont know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.



Sarah McBride said...

I am still waiting to read it. I was disappointed to miss book club last night. I really like Daphne DuMaurier, and am looking forward to reading this book!

Sandra said...

I read this many years ago and enjoyed it too. Nice to see someone review an oldie but goodie.