The Apple Tree by Daphne Du Maurier is the latest short story I have read.
In the book, we meet a man who has recently lost his wife. Daphne Du Maurier must have a thing about death and loss methinks.
The couple’s marriage is described and whilst not without affection, seems stale. In Fact, as the wife was described I recognised some rather uncomfortable aspects of myself and started to feel sorry for my poor husband. I can be a bit of martyr at times whingeing rather than stating clearly what I want and how.
It is clear that the man is of the landed gentry variety and he has staff.
One night as he stands at a window, one of the apple tress he sees takes on a strange character. Over the course of the story, it is clear that whether through grief or paranormal activity, the tree is becoming his wife in some way. He is enjoying his new freedoms and does not like that apple tree’s reminders one bit.
He tries to destroy the tree but a series of events make the tree inescapable again perhaps reflecting his long marriage.
He prefers another apple tree which comes to take on the character of a young woman he had a very brief fling with many years ago.
Will he get rid of the tree? Will his memories be as easy to erase? What happened to the woman who gave him new life all those years ago?
You will have to read it to find out.
I felt the book was very clever as you really bought into the idea that the wife was coming back to haunt him in some way.
Once again as in so many short stories, the ending seemed rushed but overall, this was a great read.