Book Review: The Glass-Blowers by Daphne Du Maurier

“The glass world was unique, a law unto itself. It had its own rules and customs, and a separate language too, handed down not only from father to son but from master to apprentice, instituted heaven knows how many centuries ago wherever the glass-makers settled—in Normandy, in Lorraine, by the Loire—but always, naturally, by forests, for wood was the glass foundry’s food, the mainstay of its existence.”

Daphne Du Maurier, The Glass-Blowers

Title: The Glass-Blowers
Author: Daphne Du Maurier
Genres: Historical Fiction, Classics
Pages: 348 (Hardcover)
Published: 1963

My Rating: ★★★
Read: 7/20/2022


This was a much different speed than the other books I’ve read by Daphne Du Maurier. While interesting, I found it painfully slow. I wanted to like it more than I did given the story’s biographical edge, the characters being somewhat based on Daphne Du Maurier’s ancestors during the French Revolution.

The story focuses on Sophie Duval and her family as they face the trials that come with war (and the realities of life in the 18th Century). The book has a mellower tone compared to the usual suspenseful themes in Du Maurier’s novels though there are sporadic moments here. As someone who doesn’t know too much about the French Revolution, it ended up being educational. At the same time, not having much of an interest in this time period made it drag. Nonetheless, I consider Daphne Du Maurier my favorite author so I’m always glad to experience her work.

Likes & Dislikes:

What I liked:

  • The French Revolution backdrop. Even though it’s not a primary historical interest for me, reading this made me realize how little I do know and that I need to fix that.
  • The familial aspect.

What I didn’t like:

  • The first thing that comes to mind I can’t mention without a spoiler warning, so I’ll be vague and say some particular moments saddened me.
  • Many of the scenes dragged.


A shoutout to my friend M. for finding me the gorgeous copy of The Glass-Blowers pictured above! I still can’t get over the great condition of the dust jacket (and that there’s one at all). Also, thanks to the Book Santas and Lovers Worldly Challenge for pushing me to finally read this book with the French Revolution prompt!

Where to buy the book:

2 responses to “Book Review: The Glass-Blowers by Daphne Du Maurier”

  1. I put this down about two thirds the way through when it started getting into the revolutionary aspect. I wish I’d been able to plow through it, I did eventually finish it, but it did drag in the mid section sadly. Her family history that this story is based on, is fascinating though.

    • I’m glad it wasn’t just me! That aspect was definitely interesting. I guess having gotten used to stories like My Cousin Rachel, Rebecca, and Don’t Look Now there was a surprising lack of suspense. But that tone wouldn’t have worked with the plot.

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