The Apple: New Crimson Petal Stories
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The Apple: New Crimson Petal Stories

3.57 of 5 stars 3.57  ·  rating details  ·  1,330 ratings  ·  155 reviews
Enjoy more Sugar, join Clara at the rat pit, and relax with Mr Bodley as he is lulled to sleep by Mrs Tremain and her girls. Find out what became of Sophie.
Paperback, 199 pages
Published July 5th 2007 by Canongate Books Ltd (first published 2004)
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In 2003 The Crimson Petal and the White was published to much acclaim. I read it and awarded it five plump wobbly stars. But other readers had other reactions. In his forward to this slender collection of short stories, Mr Faber says that he gets letters from his readers and he keeps them in a box. So that’s surprising right there – who writes to authors? I would never have the nerve. I mean, what would you say to Shakespeare? Dear Bard, I must say that I thought The Tempest was a wonderful note...more
Despite the 2*, this is not exactly a bad book, merely opportunistic, frustrating and hugely disappointing after the wonderfully rich novel which it relates to, The Crimson Petal and the White (, “TCP”.

There’s little point reading this collection unless you have read TCP, but huge disappointment if you have. I really wouldn’t advise anyone to read it.

Where TCP was a luxuriously long, deep novel, this is half a dozen very short stories, jumping on that ba...more
This is nowhere near as good or as rich as The Crimson Petal and the White. I knew it wouldn't be, but I did expect more subtext from this author. Don't let the 199 page-count fool you either. The physical pages are short, the font is fairly big and it reads quickly. I bought it for a pittance at a library sale, so I'm fine with that, and it is a pretty little book with its own ribbon marker.

The stories are technically standalones (a point Faber makes in his foreword), but I wonder how much inte...more
The Apple is a collection of new crimson petal stories that would appeal to readers who have enjoyed Faber’s Victorian epic, The Crimson Petal and the White. I was glad to be once again in the company of Sugar (intellectual whore turned governess) Sophie (Perfumer William Rackham’s little girl abducted by her governess), Clara (the maid who’d been dismissed from the Rackham household), Dr Curlew (the Rackham family physician) and his horse-face daughter (Emmeline Fox who survived consumption), B...more
I enjoyed reading some of the stories. It has been a few years since I read the Crimson Petal and the White, and it was fun to recognize names. I matched a few characters up to the wrong names and forgot some characters entirely, but none of that affected my understanding of the stories. Had it not been for one particular quote that I really, really liked, I could have gone without reading this collection. In my mind, I knew how Sugar would turn out. The ending of The Crimson Petal and the White...more
I was desperate to read this, to find out more. I still feel like I don't know everything I need to know about these wonderful characters.

I enjoyed the format of the book, the short stories of each person. I did raise my eyebrow a couple if Times whilst reading this but in a good way.

I need more. I doubt we'll ever get more but I will live in hope. In the meantime, I will grieve.

On a side note, I spent my Sunday watching the TV series, which I can, hand on heart say, was pretty spectacular. U...more
Ok folks, first things first. If you haven’t read The Crimson Petal and The White, then please don’t read this collection of short stories. It is worthless. Thankfully, Amazon will give you a discount on a group purchase.

Secondly, following the bestseller success of The Crimson Petal, Cannongate have made the commercial decision to let Faber treat us to some literary nuggets and allow us back into the lives of the central characters from the first book with glimpses into both the past and the fu...more
Jul 29, 2008 Martine rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of <i>The Crimson Petal and the White</i>
The Apple is a hard book to rate. On the one hand, I enjoyed the seven stories contained in it for the additional glimpse they provide into the lives of the characters of The Crimson Petal and the White, one of the best novels I've read this year. On the other hand, they don't provide nearly enough glimpses for my liking, and I doubt they'll appeal much to people who haven't read The Crimson Petal. So. Yeah. Conundrum!

Three of the stories in The Apple are set before the events of The Crimson Pet...more
Aug 16, 2007 Clare rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of the short story
The back of my book states that Faber is a "master" of no less than two items - "his subject" AND "the short story form". Glowing praise but I was unsure that such a slim volume could stand up to it. However, I'd loved the first book so gave this a go.

Quite a number of writers have seemed to want to delve further into fictional worlds and characters they have already created recently. For example, Susannah Clarke and "The Ladies of Grace Adieu" and this collection. This is basically a return to...more
This is a very good, but very brief, prequel/sequel to Faber's masterpiece The Crimson Petal and the White. That novel is better than anything Dickens ever wrote and almost as good as Middlemarch. Sugar and the Rackhams are some of the most well-developed fully fleshed characters in modern literature and the chance to see what came after the close of the novel, at least glimpses of that life for a few of the characters, is what drew me to this story collection.

If you haven't read The Crimson Pet...more
Helen Maltby
"I do understand how maddening it is to only get so far, and not know what happened next. I wouldn't do that to you!"

So writes a character in one of the short stories that add to the reader's understanding of Michel Faber's earlier book, "The Crimson Petal and the White".

Well, yes, Mr Faber. It IS maddening. I don't know a single person who felt satisfied when they reached the end of "Crimson Petal". We all want to know what happened next. What REALLY happened to Agnes? Where did Sugar and Sophi...more
Christy B
A delightful collection of seven short stories from the world of The Crimson Petal and the White. I had loved that novel so, that when I found out there were more glimpses into the Crimson Petal world, I just had to get it.

The stories here are nothing spectacular and they don't reveal anything major about the characters. With the way the original novel ended, I'm sure people thought these stories would be a nice little wrap-up, as it were. They are not. They are, however, a sort of revisit of ol...more
Lindsay Seddon
If you have read the Crismon Petal and the White, I highy reccomend this book. It is a collection of short stories about a few of the characters from Crimson Petal, some act as a prequel, some a sequel.

The foreword by Michael faber is interesting, so don't skip it, he includes a few letters from readers about their approval/disapproval of the ending and begging for another installment. In it he mentions that he wrote the book so that it could be enjoyed seperately from The Crimson Petal, that y...more
Elizabeth K.
Short stories about the characters from The Crimson Petal and the White, some which take place prior to the events of that book, and some after. We shall take the high quality of Faber's writing as a given, and beyond that, I had a mixed reaction. I was a little more intrigued with the stories of things that happened before, for the most part. Finding out, even remotely, what happened after made things feel too pat. And a lot of the happenings are things you might have guessed anyway, so it wasn...more
This collection of (very) short stories follows some of the characters from The Crimson Petal And The White, both before and after that novel. Each story was interesting in its own way, but none of it was satisfactory and some of them, I could have done without. I'd gladly have traded in the stories about Clara and Mr. Bodley for a lengthier version of the final story. Although I do have to admit that the story about Clara had an ending which truly made me want to know how it'd go further.

The f...more
I'm not usually a fan of short stories but I loved these. Tantalising glimpses into the lives of the Crimson Petal characters - both before and after the events depicted in the novel - and we find out what happened to Sugar and Sophie. A beautifully written glimpse into the darker side of life in Victorian London.
Stefanie Lubkowski
The Apple stories were all very engaging, and very well written, just like the novel. Some light is shed on what happened to Sugar and Sophie, but not so much that as to dispel the mystery of the the original novel. If anything, these stories make me want to read The Crimson Petal all over again.
Laura Simpson
3/4 stars

I would of like to have gone into this after reading the novel that comes before this, but I am reading this for uni, so didn't have much choice. Which is rather annoying considering I think I would of benefitted much more from having the previous book as context to this one, I think I would have connected to the characters more that way. So apart from that these short stories collection was intriguing and a unique historical fiction. I was quite shocked at parts, knowing nothing about...more
It was good to be back with old friends in this book. The stories themselves are a bit mixed. The one with Clara isn't nearly as good as the last one, but it's interesting to see where everyone went.
I'd recommend it to anyone who loved Crimson.
I enjoyed this "sequel" or collection of stories relating to "The Crimson Petal and the White" which was one of the most captivating novels I've read in recent years.

Picking up on some of the most loved and rememberable characters in the novel, this collection of short stories revisits some of them - in both "earlier" and later years in comparison of when the events in the novel took place.

As some have already commented, these stories are possibly more worth to the person who has read the novel,...more
Josh Ang
This collection of stories offers another glimpse of the much-loved characters of Faber's Victorian novel The Crimson Petal and the White.

In that novel, the fates of main character Sugar and her charge Sophie were inconclusive and many fans of the novel hoped for a sequel. However, Faber ruled out that possibility, perhaps in an effort to preserve the definitive status of that sprawling novel.

The Sugar that appears in two of the stories in this collection, including the titular story, is still...more
It was enjoyable to read more of Faber’s work set in ‘The Crimson’ period. A total of seven stories with four of the stories taking place in the future from ‘The Crimson’, not necessarily containing the characters fans of ‘The Crimson’ probably would have liked, while the other three are set in the past fleshing out characters already known to readers of 'The Crimson'.

I enjoyed some stories more than others, a few were a nice addition to the main story such as ‘The fly and it’s effect upon Mr Bo...more
Carole Tyrrell
This is a slim volume containing 8 short stories in which some of the main characters in The Crimson Petal and The White have their fates revealed. This is for everyone who, like me, finished the original book and thought ‘But what happened next to Sugar, Sophie, William…;’
The Apple doesn’t have all the answers but it does have some as we meet an older Sophie, Clare, her mother’s maid who’s fallen on hard times and become a prostitute, and Miss Sugar appears tantalisingly in the background.
And W...more
Sam Quixote
Having not read "The Crimson Petal and White" I'm not coming to this familiar with the characters. That said, this is my fourth Michel Faber novel so I know he can write and this book is no exception.

"Christmas in Silver Street" is about a prostitute called Apple who decides to give the son of one of the other prostitutes a decent Christmas dinner.

"Clara and the Rat Man" is about another prostitute called Clara, turned to streetwalking after being dismissed as a housemaid who encounters a stra...more
Christine Blachford
It's been a while since I read the Crimson Petal and the White, and although I didn't realise I was missing the characters, when I spotted this book available for the Kindle, I got quite excited. It's very short, just a few short stories featuring some of the characters from the main book.

In particular, it was fun to see what happened to Clara, and how difficult William Rackham finds life post-Sugar. The stories about Sugar herself appeared to take place before any of the action of the novel, so...more
If I hadn't been so busy, I could have sat down and finished this book in under 2 hours.

It's short, at under 200 pages, and each story is an extremely fast read. At first I had trouble racking my brain to recall certain details of The Crimson Petal and the White, in order to make these stories fit into that timeline, but within a few minutes of each story I found myself making it make sense.

If you're looking for this book to solve all the unanswered questions at the end of The Crimson Petal and...more
Jun 28, 2013 Sparrow rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of Historical Fiction, Victorian England, Scandalous Women.
I only just discovered Faber's follow up of sorts to The Crimson Petal and the White, years after I finished the original book. After reading the former, and left wanting more, I was thrilled to discover The Apple, but a little disappointed by it's novella-length.

The Apple is a compilation of short stories, which serve as either prologues or epilogues to some of the characters in The Crimson Petal and the White. The stories are just as fantastic and engaging as the first one was, but aside from...more
These short stories were very interesting. After finishing "The Crimson Petal and the White," I wanted more about Sophie and Sugar and William. Suffice to say I just wanted more. Faber has said countless times that he will not write a sequel and that seems to be his final decision. In the introduction, he gives some very logical reasons and I finally see from his point of view.

I was surprised by how many different characters were featured in these stores. We see Sugar twice I believe, Clara, an...more
Michel Faber's The Crimson Petal and The White is one of my favourite books (see my review). It's a Victorian-style gothic tale about Sugar, an angry prostitute that manages to rise through society by making a wealthy man fall in love with her. But it's more than that too - it's a panoramic of London in the Victorian times, in all its squalor, filth and inequality. When I closed the book back in December 2010, I wanted more as Faber's style was just so distinctive and captivating. So I was excit...more
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Short stories based on characters from his novel 1 2 Apr 10, 2014 11:15AM  
  • Gillespie and I
  • Captivity
  • Forbidden Journeys: Fairy Tales and Fantasies by Victorian Women Writers
  • Ratcatcher (Matthew Hawkwood, #1)
  • The Great Stink
  • The Dress Lodger
  • The Taste of Sorrow
  • Highgate Rise (Charlotte & Thomas Pitt, #11)
  • The Fourth Queen
  • The Somnambulist
  • Anthropology
  • Dark Shadows: Angélique's Descent
  • The Colony
  • Twelfth Night (Lady Julia Grey, #5.6)
  • American Fantastic Tales: Terror and the Uncanny from the 1940's Until Now (Library of America #197)
  • The Madness of a Seduced Woman
  • The Courtesan's Lover
  • You Must Be This Happy to Enter
Michel Faber (born 13 April 1960) is a Dutch writer of fiction. He writes in English.

Faber was born in The Hague, The Netherlands. He and his parents emigrated to Australia in 1967. He attended primary and secondary school in the Melbourne suburbs of Boronia and Bayswater, then attended the University Of Melbourne, studying Dutch, Philosophy, Rhetoric, English Language (a course involving translat...more
More about Michel Faber...
The Crimson Petal and the White Under the Skin The Courage Consort The Fahrenheit Twins The Hundred and Ninety-Nine Steps

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