Self-Incrimination – Rachel Abbott
Rachel Abbott, author of the gripping AND SO IT BEGINS, introduces one of her favourite reads - REBECCA - for our Self-Incrimination blog piece
Posted on November 13, 2018 in Self incrimination
Tags: And So It Begins, Rachel Abbott, Rebecca, du Maurier, self incrimination
Every day as I sit at my desk I remind myself that as a psychological crime writer I’m still in the business of entertainment! How can I ramp up an impending crisis, a death that must be avoided? How can I deliver an unpredictable and rousing plot?
How can I hook readers from the first page and keep them dangling to the denouement? To keep them suspended in my story?
I hope I have learned from the master! The book that influenced me most and kept me glued to the page was Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier. It has female protagonists – the current Mrs de Winter who remains unnamed, the former Mrs de Winter, deceased but far from dead and the terrifying Mrs Danvers who haunts every corner.
When I read this book, Du Maurier’s imagination blew me away. A character who has already been killed off takes the book’s title and holds the centre stage throughout. Brilliant! I also loved the fact that as a reader, I wanted the killer to go unpunished – something I had never expected to feel in a story.
In my own work, Rebecca has inspired me to imagine the most twisted, most challenging scenarios and I love to have women caught up in them, facing dilemmas, making decisions that may not always be the most obvious. I can decide whether an ordinary person – like the rather pale and insignificant Mrs de Winter – can rise to the challenge of getting herself or her loved ones to a safe place. Should she sink or swim? And will I allow her a lifeline? I’m never quite sure until the very last page.