CRIMSON PETAL AND THE WHITEMICHEL FABER Book Number: 90857 Product format: Hardback
Sugar is an alluring, 19 year old whore in the brothel of the terrifying Mrs Castaway. She yearns for a better life. Her ascent through the strata of 1870s London society offers us an intimacy with a host of loveable, maddening and superbly realised characters. Well read, Sugar spends her free hours composing a violent, pornographic screed against men. We learn about the positions and orifices that Sugar and her clients favour, about her lingering skin condition, and about the suspect ingredients of her prophylactic douches. When Sugar is taken up by a wealthy man, the perfumier William Rackham, her wings are clipped and she must balance financial security against the obvious servitude of her position. Her physical risks and hardships contrast with the medical mistreatment of her benefactor's wife Agnes. Packed with historical detail about costume, food, manners, cheap stage performances, the London streets, this is a juicy and unputdownable novel. A big chunky paperback of 845pp in the BBC TV Drama edition.
Published price: £9.99
Bibliophile price: £5.00