Title: Daphne du Maurier: A Daughter's Memoir by Flavia Lang
Comments: Not quite a "Mummy Dearest" book, Flavia Lang's recollections of growing up as the child of one of the most famous authors in the world still makes for disturbing reading. As I read the book, I wondered what her siblings, particularly her older sister, felt about the revelations. Lang has obviously inherited some of her mother's talent, and it is in some ways an easy and often funny read of a very unusual childhood. The unwanted second daughter of somewhat remote and aloof parents, she is despised by her pretty sister, who suffered greatly from the isolation of their upbringing, but develops a very close and loving bond with her beloved and clearly favoured younger brother. Both her parents are extremely successful in their chosen career - her mother is a great novelist, her father one of the youngest and highest ranking military officers, extremely intelligent and charming, but somewhat self-absorbed and withdrawn from family and friends.