The Scapegoat

Front Cover
University of Pennsylvania Press, Feb 14, 2000 - Fiction - 348 pages

"Someone jolted my elbow as I drank and said, 'Je vous demande pardon,' and as I moved to give him space he turned and stared at me and I at him, and I realized, with a strange sense of shock and fear and nausea all combined, that his face and voice were known to me too well.

I was looking at myself."

Two men—one English, the other French—meet by chance in a provincial railway station and are astounded that they are so much alike that they could easily pass for each other. Over the course of a long evening, they talk and drink. It is not until he awakes the next day that John, the Englishman, realizes that he may have spoken too much. His French companion is gone, having stolen his identity. For his part, John has no choice but to take the Frenchman's place—as master of a chateau, director of a failing business, head of a large and embittered family, and keeper of too many secrets.

Loaded with suspense and crackling wit, The Scapegoat tells the double story of the attempts by John, the imposter, to escape detection by the family, servants, and several mistresses of his alter ego, and of his constant and frustrating efforts to unravel the mystery of the enigmatic past that dominates the existence of all who live in the chateau.

Hailed by the New York Times as a masterpiece of "artfully compulsive storytelling," The Scapegoat brings us Daphne du Maurier at the very top of her form.

 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - grandpahobo - LibraryThing

The story is very involved and meticulously told. Every mannerism, glance and even photograph is imbued with tremendous meaning. Having read a few novels of this era, this seems to be something ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - janoorani24 - LibraryThing

Daphne du Maurier's suspenseful tale of doppelganger identity-switching set in post-World War Two France held my attention from beginning to end. The main character/narrator is John (whose last name ... Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

CHAPTER 1
7
CHAPTER 2
15
CHAPTER 3
27
CHAPTER 4
39
CHAPTER 5
56
CHAPTER 6
66
CHAPTER 7
74
CHAPTER 8
93
CHAPTER 15
188
CHAPTER 16
202
CHAPTER 17
215
CHAPTER 18
226
CHAPTER 19
235
CHAPTER 20
249
CHAPTER 21
261
CHAPTER 22
271

CHAPTER 9
107
CHAPTER 10
119
CHAPTER 11
131
CHAPTER 12
147
CHAPTER 13
157
CHAPTER 14
173
CHAPTER 23
285
CHAPTER 24
300
CHAPTER 25
315
CHAPTER 26
325
CHAPTER 27
338
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About the author (2000)

In addition to The Scapegoat and The House on the Strand, Dame Daphne du Maurier (1907-1989) wrote more than twenty-five acclaimed novels, short stories, and plays, including Rebecca, Jamaica Inn, Frenchman's Creek, and "The Birds.

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