Frenchman’s Creek by Daphne du Maurier

When I finished listening to the audiobook version of Frenchman’s Creek by Daphne du Maurier, I was left sitting at my kitchen table in floods of tears. What a moving story! The first thing I thought after I finished was that this was rather like The Bridges of Madison County – a woman is married to someone and has children with him, but her true love comes later and she must ultimately decide between her family and her lover.


This historical fiction novel is set during the reign of Charles II and Dona St. Colomb is a bored woman who engages in silly, juvenile pranks around the court. One day she has enough and decides to leave London and go to Cornwall, where her husband has a house, Navron. It is here that she finds some peace and quiet in woods around the house, and one day she finds herself by a creek in which there is a pirate ship, called La Mouette…

I won’t go into detail, but the story gets very interesting from that point on. If someone like me – a person who studies 17th-century piracy – can get swept away by Aubery, I don’t know who wouldn’t. I want to go on La Mouette with him and sail into the sunset. All the characters are delightfully created and although I had a strong dislike of Dona in the beginning, I soon warmed to her (which I think was the intention). It didn’t take long to warm to the Frenchman – crikey! What a character. I absolutely loved this book, which I am sure I’ll reread again because it is such a treasure.

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