Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Bone China” as Want to Read:
Bone China
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Bone China

3.84  ·  Rating details ·  312 ratings  ·  129 reviews
Consumption has ravaged Louise Pinecroft's family, leaving her and her father alone and heartbroken. But Dr Pinecroft has plans for a revolutionary experiment: convinced that sea air will prove to be the cure his wife and children needed, he arranges to house a group of prisoners suffering from the same disease in the cliffs beneath his new Cornish home. While he devotes h ...more
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published September 19th 2019 by Raven Books
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Bone China, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Bone China

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.84  · 
Rating details
 ·  312 ratings  ·  129 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Sep 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
Laura Purcell writes another of her well written and atmospheric trademark gothic historical novels set in a isolated house, Morvoren House, on the Cornish coastline that goes back and forth in time. Hester Why is running away from her post as a lady's maid in London, a situation of which we learn much more later. She has changed her name as she arrives in Cornwall at Morvoren House to help nurse the partially paralysed, almost mute Miss Louise Pinecroft. However, Hester just might well have cli ...more
Sep 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 5000-2019
When I see a book by Laura Purcell now I snap it up instantly. I also know what to expect - something Victorian, gothic, slightly creepy, containing lots of accurate historical fact, well written and very enjoyable.

Bone China did not let me down. There was my much loved Cornwall which can indeed be a spooky place up on the moors and on the bleaker parts of the coast line. There was all the history of the time - the folklore, the strange to us medical practices, the china clay industry in earlier
I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Bone China is the latest offering from gothic writer Laura Purcell, and follows multiple timelines and threads 40 years apart to weave a tale steeped in Cornish folklore with her traditional spooky writing style. I loved The Silent Companions, and was hoping for something with a similar atmospheric feel, but there’s just something missing here.

There no denying that Purcell can write, and write well. Her stories are always consumed
Jul 21, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: netgalley
A gothic novel based in Cornwall about two women Louise and Hester.
This story is told in two timelines 40 years apart.
I found the story creepy and strange.
Thank you to NetGalley and Bloomsbury Publishing for my e-copy in exchange for an honest review.
Umut Reviews
Jun 29, 2019 rated it it was ok
I think at this stage, we can say the only book I enjoyed from Purcell is The Silent Companions. The Corset was a miss being very crowded and having plot holes in it.
I was still excited for Bone China because I love her spooky, gothic writing style. Also, the history and atmosphere she contains in her books are amazing. I still find the historic and atmospheric quality of her books very strong. But, I just don't get along with her plots.
This one contained 3 different story lines very separate
Jun 03, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
Hester Why is exceedingly unlucky. Either that, or the kind of person who makes her own bad fortune. Fleeing from her position in London, she arrives at Morvoren House to find out that things might have gotten worse. Her troubles in the city, at least, had been human in nature; in the wilds of the Cornish coast, she might have attracted the attention of something much darker and more dangerous…

Although individually the three main threads of the book have all the ingredients for a good story, the
Aug 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
Creepy, gothic, tragic, superstition, insanity: these are becoming the hallmark of a Laura Purcell story and long may it continue. Does belief in the local Cornish folklore make it true? This tale is saturated in folklore, fear, paranoia and dread. Hester Why is a misguided and sad character who seems only to want to be loved and needed- finally she finds a way to save one of her charges.
Jun 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Beautifully written and truly original. 🖤

I have read and loved The Silent Companions and The Corset, so I was really excited when I saw LP had a new book due out. Bone China continues LP’s reign as the new Queen of Gothic Fiction.
Set on the cliffs of Cornwall, the scene is set for Hester Why to join the staff in Morveron house, and within a very short timeframe things become increasingly odd. The book focuses on Hester’s story, and the medical experiments that took place in the cliffs under the
Ova - Excuse My Reading
Sadly an early DNF- so I don't think it'll be fair to score it.
Aug 25, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Thank you NetGalley and Raven books for a copy of this book I was looking forward to reading Bone China as I loved her previous two books The Silent Companions and The Corset.
Set in Cornwall Hester Why is travelling to her new job in Morvoren House, after leaving her previously job abruptly. We learn more about why later in the story. When she helps someone as they just fallen off the carriage. She arrives at Morvoren house where she meets an eclectic group of people. The story also goes back 40
Sarah  Loves Books and tea
Sep 11, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley
Bone China is a gothic historical novel set in Cornwall and written from the perspectives of two very different women 40 years apart. The first main character Hester works as a companion and carer to the mute and partially paralysed Miss Pinecroft in her very creepy house but in the alternate viewpoint we follow the young Miss Pinecroft when her family first move to Cornwall. I loved the very early chapters which explain why Hester is on the run from her previous employers and that was my favour ...more
Originally posted to I Should Read That

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This is a spoiler-free review.

4.5 out of 5 stars

I absolutely loved Purcell’s first Gothic novel, The Silent Companions, but was disappointed in the second, The Corset. Naturally, I was very curious about Bone China, her latest book, to see if it would recapture everything I loved about The Silent Companions. It absolutely did -- Bone China is a fantastic addition to
Sep 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arc, gothic
If you are looking for a creepy, sinister book to read this Halloween, look no further. Faeries, dark caves, floating lights, radical medical experiments, haunted houses, servants with shocking secrets, changelings and scary dolls. Yes yes yes!! This has it all.

Bone China is a character driven gothic tale of superstition, obsession and insanity. It is so dark and atmospheric and every page is filled with an unsettling, ominous foreboding. I was gripped and beguiled.

Thank you to Netgalley and Bl
Wow!! @SpookyPurcell does it again, delves into the past and pulls out a ripe juicy plum of a story.
Haunting and mesmerising, Bone China is set over 2 historical periods of time 40 years apart.
The story begins with Hester Why travelling by carriage to Cornwall to take up a new position at Morvoren House where she is to be employed as a domestic help nursing the frail, elderly, invalid Miss Pinecroft. It’s obvious Hester is running away from something. She is leaving behind her a trail of jobs wh
Jul 22, 2019 rated it liked it
Thank you to Netgalley and the publishers for an E-ARC copy of Bone China in exchange for an honest review.

I was so excited to read this book. It started off really promising. The scene and atmosphere was set really well. It began with Hester Why on her journey and arrival at her new job at Morvoren House. It then took us back to her previous job and the reason why she left. Another part of the story then took us back 40 years or so to tell the story of the life of her new mistress. This was all
Jun 26, 2019 rated it it was ok
Set primarily in Cornwall during two time periods roughly 40 years apart we follow Louise Pinecroft & her family. In the early thread Louise is helping her physician Father with a new treatment for TB. In the later thread Louise is an older woman still living in the same house in Cornwall.

I wasn’t a big fan of this author’s first book, The Silent Companions. I felt there was something missing from it & I feel the same with this book. There is a lot of discussion around the Cornish folklo
Aug 04, 2019 rated it really liked it

Firstly, thank you to the publisher at Bloomsbury Publishing, and to Net Galley, for allowing me to read Bone China ahead of its publication in exchange for an honest review!

Bone China is predominantly set in Cornwall, in a house on a cliff above a raging sea – a house that contains secrets, superstitious maids, and a lot of china. Hester Why has arrived to become the new nurse for the lady of the household, the strange and silent Miss Pinecroft. Hester’s job isn’t made easy however, what
Anupama C K(b0rn_2_read)
Thanks to Pigeonhole for the review copy. Laura Purcell as usual pulls us right in with her atmospheric writing. Though I did feel a lot of questions were unanswered, it was creepy enough
Karen Mace
Sep 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Gloriously gothic and deliciously dark - it's fair to say that I loved reading this and I will never look at a piece of willow patterned china the same way ever again!!

Bone China is a story set over 2 timelines and it's a fascinating mix of history, folklore, obsession, madness and superstition. There are many threads throughout that I found so absorbing and I loved how the story went backwards and forwards to give you different glimpses of the characters and to watch it all come together at the
Jun 26, 2019 rated it liked it
Bone China is a story that unfolds through three period narrations. The first: Hester Why arrives at her new charge's home, Morvoren House. The place is eerie and the people within are rife with strangeness, silence and superstition. Is everything as it seems?
The second: In London, Ester Stevens was a new lady’s maid to Lady Rose, which was going well, until Ester had to run away because of something terrible.
The third: Louise Pinecroft and her father arrive at their new residence, where they
Jun 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
Laura Purcell excels in mixing intriguing historical stories with gothic thrills, and this, her third novel (following The Silent Companions and The Corset) has echoes of Daphne du Maurier, as it is set in 19th century Cornwall. Hester/Esther is a lady’s maid, who has learned some nursing and midwifery from her mother, and she flees her former employment in London in disgrace, and under an assumed name, to take up a new post at a remote Cornish house. A functioning alcoholic, she switches from g ...more
Vanessa Wild
Sep 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A dual timeline Victorian gothic horror story set in Cornwall. Underneath the cliffs near his home, Dr Pinecroft is experimenting on a group of prisoners who have consumption, in the hope of discovering a cure. Forty years later, escaping her past, Hester Why takes up the position of nurse to Louise Pinecroft, the strange and ill daughter of the aforementioned doctor. Odd things start to happen and superstitions regarding folklore abound. Hester doesn’t know what to believe!

This is a dark, atmos
Helen Carolan
Sep 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Hooray after a couple of bad reads a winner. This had everything wonderfully Gothic. Louise Pincroft and her doctor father move to Cornwall after the deaths of the rest of her family from t.b. Her father intends to carry out experiments on convicts hoping to find a cure for t.b. 40yrs later Hester Why arrives to look after the now ageing Louise. She is running from her troubles in London but realises the troubles in Cornwall are much worse. Terrifically Gothic with an eerie mansion, superstitiou ...more
Vikki Patis
Jun 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Another truly excellent novel by Laura Purcell, Bone China is riveting, mysterious, and absolutely gripping. Set in Cornwall, this book is full of folklore and magic, not just that of the fairies, but also of the setting. Cornwall is a truly magical place, and it is a fitting location for this book.
Jun 05, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Laura Purcell has definitely mastered the art of creepy. She seems to go from strength to strength with each book.
This one is my favourite.
It takes the every day and sends a slight shiver down your back.
Nicely tying threads up from two different timelines,and weaving in stories of fairies that were all to readily believed back in the day.
This book is packed with atmosphere,and a decent amount of tension.
Aimee Walker Editorial
Sep 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
I have loved both of Laura Purcell's previous novels. I'm a big gothic fan. While I loved elements of this one it isn't my favourite of hers. I loved the story about Dr Pinecroft and his experimental treatments for consumption but I would have liked more of that part of the story than the later part.
I look forward to seeing what she comes up with next! Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for this e-copy in exchange for an honest review.
Aug 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
Laura Purcell is fast becoming one of my auto-buy authors.

Much like her debut, The Silent Companions and her previous novel, The Corset, Bone China is a gothicly atmospheric and creepy period piece. Purcell perfectly manages to teeter on the edge of psychological horror and paranormal fantasy. In Bone China the elements at war against each other are guilt, grief and illness versus superstition and fairy changelings.

It’s hard to review this book without giving too much away: much like Purcell’s o
Sep 24, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2019-read
I loved The Silent Companions by this author so jumped at the chance to get a copy of Bone China from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review... but having finished it I feel a bit disappointed.

The story is quite complex... we start with Hester Why who is starting a new life with a new identity after an issue in her last position as a lady's maid. As the story progresses we learn more about this. She ends up at Morvoren House caring for Miss Pinecroft who is elderly, ill and sits looking at t
Sep 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
Another creepy dose of gothic madness and melancholia. 4/5 stars.

This review was originally posted on my book blog.

I’ve read and enjoyed Purcell’s previous two books. The Silent Companions is a masterclass in creating an oppressive atmosphere and a big spooky house for characters to rattle around in. I didn’t feel The Corset was quite as successful, but it was another entertaining story with plenty of twists and turns. As with her previous books, in Bone China it is in creating atmosphere that t
Erica (ricci.reads)
~ I was given an advance reader copy of this title in exchange for an honest review, I'm not associated with the author or publisher in any way and the views expressed are completely unbiased and entirely my own. ~

'Bone China' is a gothic historical fiction novel, and is the latest offering from 'The Silent Companions' author Laura Purcell.

The premise of this tale is really intriguing to say the least, especially as someone who's never read any of the authors previous works. Based in Cornwall in
« previous 1 3 4 5 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
Laura Purcell is a former bookseller and lives in Colchester with her husband and pet guinea pigs.

Her first novel for Raven Books THE SILENT COMPANIONS won the WHSmith Thumping Good Read Award 2018 and featured in both the Zoe Ball and Radio 2 Book Clubs. Other Gothic novels include THE CORSET (THE POISON THREAD in USA), BONE CHINA and THE SHAPE OF DARKNESS (2020)

Laura’s historical fiction about
No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »