Wednesday, 13 August 2008

Veggie Books - Rebecca

This blog needs more vegetables.

Since I'm not veggie boxing at the moment (sounds like an olympic sport) I've devised a cunning new way to make sure you all get your five a fortnight. I've decided to blog about books that contain vegetables. Or fruits - I'm not picky.

I'm going to start off with one of my all-time top ten, Daphne Du Maurier's Rebecca.

I reread this recently because it's my comfort book whenever I feel stressed. There's something so involving about Manderley that it's impossible to keep worrying about your own carpets or waistline or whatever. And it struck me that there's a wonderful bit early on where the heroine daydreams about the man she's going to marry while she eats a mandarin.

She imagines herself as a great lady of Manderley, receiving guests, being adored, fitting right into a role which we already know she's unsuited for. And her husband to be says, 'I wouldn't eat the rest of that if I were you.' She realises the segments of mandarin are hard and pale. So involved was she in her daydream that she didn't notice the sour taste.

Go mandarin! Great stuff. And Du Maurier was a friend of fruit generally. She also wrote a very upsetting short story called The Apple Tree.

Daphne Du Maurier - unsung heroine of fruit.


Matt Curran said...

Great post, Aliya

May I suggest "Day of the Triffids" next? Aparently they're a fine root vegetable if you can get past that rattling noise and the occasional fatal sting.

David Isaak said...

"Rebecca" is one of the great novels.

But when the topic of literary vegetables comes up--as it does so often with the better class of people--I'm reminded of Susan Isaac's hilarious "Compromising Positions," which involves a subplot of a neighbor lady and snapshots of her doing things with her veggie box.

The protagonist and her friend become rather skeptical of salads at other people's houses thereafter...

Aliya Whiteley said...

I didn't realise triffids were edible.

And as for doing rude things with vegetables - shocking. Rest assured I won't be blogging about anything like that.

(watches readership wander away to nearest rude veggie site instead)