Chapter 10 -- In which a visit to the beach makes it abundantly clear that Maxim de Winter was in no way ready to marry again.
Re: The raincoat. I doubt that Maxim would have even attempted to boss Rebecca the way he bosses Mrs.deW2. (Of course, if he had made the attempt, she probably would have laughed at him. And he would have loved her for it.)
The items Mrs.deW2 omitted when she told Maxim what she and Beatrice talked about: Mrs. Danvers, Maxim's personality and temper, that coming to Manderley would be a strain on Mrs.deW2, Mrs.deW2's appearance.
His look of astonishment after she asks his opinion of her hair made me wonder if he'd ever even noticed her hair.
If Ben the Idiot Fisherman isn't a Classic Gothic Character, I don't know what is.
This was good:
There was another door at the end of the room, and I went to it, and opened it, a little fearful now, a little afraid, for I had the odd, uneasy feeling that I might come across something unawares, that I had no wish to see. Something that might harm me, that might be horrible.
All of the pauses in that first sentence worked for me, made it a billion times creepier. I kept waiting for Maxim to storm in the other door and start yelling at her for trespassing. The situation gave off a real Bluebeard vibe.
The power walk back: It was nice to see Mrs.deW2 stick up for herself, for once -- shades of an actual personality (I continue to suspect that she has more strength than she's been letting on) -- even though she backed down pretty quickly.
I still don't loathe Maxim the way that some do. He's totally self-absorbed, at least a little bit crazy, and he certainly (as I said above) shouldn't have remarried, but it's not like he presented a different face to Mrs.deW2 during their courtship period. Heck, on the first drive he took her on, he acted like he might throw himself off a cliff! She didn't have to marry him. I found this interesting:
"Yes," I said. "I've made you unhappy. It's the same as making you angry. You're all wounded and hurt and torn inside. I can't bear to see you like this. I love you so much."
"Do you?" he said. "Do you?" He held me very tight, and his eyes questioned me, dark and uncertain, the eyes of a child in pain, a child in fear.
Okay, her crazy logic aside, this made me think that he's desperate to be loved (and/or worshipped) and made me wonder if he had doubts about Rebecca's feeling for him. Or something. But I might be being overly suspicious again, and/or employing my own crazy logic.
Chapter 11 -- In which our narrator has a heart-to-heart with Frank Crawley.
This made me want to slap her: "It was all my fault, because I had gone down into the bay."
"...we lived our lives together, sleeping, eating, walking, writing letters, driving to the village, working hour by hour through our day..."
But not, you notice, enjoying it. Man, free time is so wasted on some people.
"...not the normal happy self I knew myself to be."
HA! I say again, HA!
"You have qualities that are just as important, far more so, in fact. It's perhaps cheek of me to say so, I don't know you very well. I'm a bachelor, I don't know very much about women, I lead a quiet sort of life down here at Manderley as you know, but I should say that kindliness, and sincerity, and if I may say so--modesty--are worth far more to a man, to a husband, than all the wit and beauty in the world."
AHA! My suspicions continue.
This got a guffaw:
I was not sure what he meant about modesty. It was a word I had never understood. I always imagined it had something to do with minding meeting people in a passage on the way to a bathroom...
Chapter 12 -- In which our narrator moans about Rebecca a bit more and might even realize that this is shaping up to be one of the Worst Marriages Ever.
Frith is a jerk.
"Writing letters is a waste of time," said Maxim.
Interesting that he would say that, as Rebecca had apparently spent a good part of her life writing letters.
The China Cupid Incident:
She did not seem to be surprised that I was the culprit. She looked at me with her white skull's face and her dark eyes. I felt she had known it was me all along and had accused Robert to see if I would have the courage to confess.
While I'm aware of Mrs.deW2's seriously high paranoia level, I'm inclined to agree with her on this one. Even more so after this:
"It's very unfortunate," said Mrs. Danvers, "I don't think we have ever had any breakages in the morning-room before. We were always so particular. I've done the dusting in there myself since--last year. There was no one I could trust. When Mrs. de Winter was alive we used to do the valuables together."
Wow. What a BEAST. Note that she didn't even say "the first Mrs. de Winter".
"Little idiot", "sweet child". Slappable, he is.
I think she pegged it here:
"What a slap in the eye I must be to them," I repeated. And then "I suppose that's why you married me," I said, "you knew I was dull and quiet and inexperienced, so that there would never be any gossip about me."
And, going back to the last chapter -- I think this makes it perfectly clear that she knows exactly what Frank meant by modesty. See?? She's tricky.
Maxim has noticed that she's lost weight. That's something, I guess. He's realized and admitted that he may have married her for selfish reasons. Aaaaand he's still treating her like a pet:
He patted my cheek in his terrible absent way...
Still don't hate him, though. Wouldn't want to be married to him, but I don't hate him. I just think he's a disaster.
"We are happy, aren't we? Terribly happy?"
Oh, Mrs.deW2, if you have to ask...