Although I would have previously sworn that it was impossible for du Maurier to write a bad book, this one comes periously close and although it had all the right elements; good story, fascinating real life people, great period setting, royalty, scandal etc it just never really came together for me. It felt disjointed, uneven, lacking in emotion and with a lacklustre, prosaic feel that du Mauriers other books just don't have. I missed her lyrical descriptions. I also struggled to sympathise with Mary Anne, and by the end I positively disliked her, not caring one bit about her fate. Disappointingly, the narrative was a strange and uncomfortable mix of historical fiction and biography which never quite reached it's potential and in the end left me wanting more of both.
However, this is Daphne du Maurier we're talking about so even a 'meh' book by her is better than a lot of others out there. Just don't expect another Rebecca or Frenchman's Creek or My Cousin Rachel etc.
Buddy read with Kim.