Sir Gerald du Maurier was the most celebrated actor-manager of his day, knighted for his services to the theatre in 1922. Published within six months of her father's death, this frank biography was considered shocking by many of his admirers - but it was a huge success, winning Daphne du Maurier critical acclaim and launching her career. In Gerald: A Portrait, Daphne du Maurier captures the spirit and charm of the charismatic actor who played the original Captain Hook, amusingly recalling his eccentricities and his sense of humour, and sensitively portraying the darker side of his nature and his bouts of depression.
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(198mm x 126mm x 18mm)
Virago Press Ltd
Publisher: Little, Brown Book Group
Country of Publication:
UK Kirkus Review »
When Daphne Du Maurier lost her father, Gerald, in 1934, she refused to attend his funeral but instead went onto Hampstead Heath and released some pigeons, thinking this more in keeping with what her father would have wanted. Her way of saying farewell to Gerald was to suggest to her agent that she write a biography of him; not a traditional, serious book, as was the custom of the time, but instead a colourful and honest portrait of a celebrated theatrical man. Despite the controversy surrounding it - Du Maurier felt compelled to allude to her father's infidelities - her book was a huge success, and on the strength of its reception she travelled to Cornwall and wrote one of her most successful novels, 'Jamaica Inn'. 'Gerald: A Portrait' is unlike anything else that Du Maurier has written, and for that reason is intriguing, as well as being a readable snapshot of Victorian family life. (Kirkus UK)
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Author Biography - Daphne Du Maurier
Daphne du Maurier (1907-89) was born in London, the daughter of the famous actor-manager Sir Gerald du Maurier and granddaughter of George du Maurier, the author and artist. In 1931 her first novel, The Loving Spirit, was published. A biography of her father and three other novels followed, but it was the novel Rebecca that launched her into the literary stratosphere and made her one of the most popular authors of her day. In 1932, du Maurier married Major Frederick Browning, with whom she had three children. Many of du Maurier's bestselling novels and short stories were adapted into award-winning films, including Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds and Nicolas Roeg's Don't Look Now. In 1969 du Maurier was awarded a DBE. She lived most of her life in Cornwall, the setting for many of her books.