First Chapter First Paragraph: Don’t Look Now by Daphne du Maurier

Every Tuesday First Chapter, First Paragraph/Intros is hosted by Vicky of I’d Rather Be at the Beach sharing the first paragraph or two of a book she’s reading or plans to read soon.

This week’s book is Don’t Look Now: Short Stories by Daphne du Maurier, a book I’m about to start reading.

Don't Look Now and Other Stories

‘Don’t look now,’ John said to his wife, ‘but there are a couple of old girls two tables away who are trying to hypnotise me.’

Laura, quick on cue, made an elaborate pretence of yawning, then tilted her head as though searching the skies for a non-existent aeroplane.

‘Right behind you,’ he added. ‘That’s why you can’t turn round at once – it would be much too obvious.’

Blurb (Amazon):

John and Laura have come to Venice to try and escape the pain of their young daughter’s death. But when they encounter two old women who claim to have second sight, they find that instead of laying their ghosts to rest they become caught up in a train of increasingly strange and violent events.

The four other haunting, evocative stories in this volume also explore deep fears and longings, secrets and desires: a lonely teacher who investigates a mysterious American couple, a young woman confronting her father’s past, a party of pilgrims who meet disaster in Jerusalem and a scientist who harnesses the power of the mind to chilling effect.


After I’ve read it I shall watch the film – Julie Christie and Donald Sutherland play the parts of Laura and John in the 1973 film.

Don't Look Now  (Digitally Restored) [DVD] [1973]

I wonder how well it follows the original story? And will it infuriate me if it doesn’t? I hope not.

16 thoughts on “First Chapter First Paragraph: Don’t Look Now by Daphne du Maurier

  1. Oh, I have to admit that I dislike it when a film adaptation doesn’t follow the original story, Margaret. I hope this one does. And I’m glad you’re reading a Du Maurier. Her work really can be haunting…

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    1. I love Du Maurier’s books and her short stories are much better than others I’ve read. Hitchcock’s The Birds is ‘adapted’ from her short story of that name – and it bears no resemblance at all to her story!

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  2. Oh, I have loved several books by Du Maurier, but have not read this one. Now I must find it…and that 1973 movie, as I enjoy Donald Sutherland and Julie Christie. Thanks for sharing…and for visiting my blog.

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  3. Based on the first paragraph, I’d keep reading. But, based on the blurb, I’d pass. It sounds like it would be sad.


  4. I absolutely love his books and that time period! Also I’ve seen that film and vaguely remember – was it the one with the weird clown and things falling down at the end? Trying not to give too much away here… lol Lots of running around narrow street passages?

    Here is my teaser!

    Have a great day! Luv Sassy!


  5. I enjoyed both book and film of Don’t Look Now, but I read and watched years apart so can’t remember whether the film is faithful to the book or not. I’ll be interested to hear what you think…


  6. I will be reading this book soon too as it is on my 20 Books of Summer list. I’ve enjoyed some of du Maurier’s other short story collections in the past, so I’m looking forward to this one and will be interested to hear your thoughts.


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