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Bone China

3.69  ·  Rating details ·  3,915 ratings  ·  603 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, 433 pages
Published September 19th 2019 by Raven Books
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Kelly B Some of the china was made from the bones of the dead men. She was waiting and watching for her father to be returned from the fairies, like Creeda sa…moreSome of the china was made from the bones of the dead men. She was waiting and watching for her father to be returned from the fairies, like Creeda said he could be.(less)

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Average rating 3.69  · 
Rating details
 ·  3,915 ratings  ·  603 reviews

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Amalia Gkavea
''This is the bitterest winter I can recall. Too cold, even for snow. A world washed innocent and white might bring me some comfort, but no - this is the season of sleet and gunmetal skies. Everything is grey and cold. It is like purgatory, like my heart.''

A heavy winter in Cornwall. Frost, mist. Silence. Icy tears on the windowpanes, the murmur of the tireless sea, the silence in a house where the past walks, rattling heavy chains. Two women. Hester Why, escaping from a dangerous position,
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
Aug 01, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Laura Purcell's third novel turned out be my first one, having enjoyed it, I ordered the two remaining books.
Two main characters, Hester Why and Louise Pinecroft, are brought together when Hester arrives at Morvoren House from London to be a companion to a mysterious Miss Pinecroft. Then, we are offered two stories, the first one that of Hester and later of Louise. The novel is full of secrets, remorse, death, unfulfilled love and failed medical experiments, of which we learn as the narration pr
Apr 22, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: edelweiss
Laura Purcell has a knack for writing Victorian Gothic Tales but this one didn't quite hit the spot for me.

This book is told in two alternating story-lines. One where Louise Pinecroft's family has died from consumption. Leaving her and her Physician father alone and grieving. In his grief Dr. Pinecraft believes that he knows a cure - he is going to conduct an experiment using prisoners who have consumption and show how the sea air can cure them. He is housing the prisoners in the caves underneat
Apr 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"My love is a grasping thing. A vine I cannot extricate myself from, pulling me down, down. It is dragging me all the way to Cornwall". "Anger has ever been a failing of mine. When it surges, it sings in my veins like a dram of gin. Any action seems possible, reasonable. It is only afterwards, when the fire fades, that I see the dark soot-stain of what I have done".

Esther Stevens had been forced to flee to Cornwall, "a place teetering on the edge of the map...". "Everything I treasure can be con
May 23, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: gothic-fiction

Having loved The Silent Companions and The Corset by Laura Purcell I was excited to read Bone China as it was described as a A brilliantly atmospheric and chilling tale and seemed like my kind of book and while I enjoyed the story I found it a little confusing and had trouble connecting the threads within the story.

Consumption has ravaged Louise Pinecroft's family, leaving her and her father alone and heartbroken, but Dr Pinecroft is working on a ground breaking experiment, convinced that s
Sep 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Eerie tale of superstition and sickness and redemption

In old England's history there were fairies and pixies, and they weren't cute and benevolent. This is a tale of the evil that lurks in the drip of a cave, the delirium from illness and drink, and the shadows in a monstrous old house. Hester Why comes to the house on the cliff over the sea to tend to a patient who has had a stroke. The old lady's body is weak, but her brain is sharp, and so is the vigil she keeps against the little people. Mis
Sep 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
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
3.5 Stars

I jumped at the chance to read this because I loved the author's previous two offerings, The Silent Companions and The Poison Thread. Laura Purcell has become my "go to" author for gothic historical fiction. However, this book fell just a bit short for me compared to those previous two.

When I first delved into this book I felt the warm and cozy familiarity of a similar journey on a horse driven wagon that reminded me of her first book. A woman utilizing the moniker of Hester Why was esc
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
Diane S ☔
Gothic in tone, this extremely atmospheric to line I set on the Cornish Coast in a house called Morovoren. A book that mixes superstition, medicine and ancient folklore. It goes back and forth, from the last and future. Intriguing characters and a storyline where I wasn't sure who or what to believe. Changelings, fairies, a new cure for tuberculous and a personal maid, Hester, with a challenging past.

I think enjoyment of this book depends on how much belief the reader is able to suspend. If the
Apr 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
Hester Why has answered an advertisement for a nurse and maid, moving from London to Cornwall, the other end of the country. A place is that, in her own words, “teetering on the edge of the map”. She is crushed into a 4- person mail coach with five others. And yet she knows she is one of the lucky ones when the coach spins to a spine-jerking halt and one of the passengers riding on the roof falls from the carriage. Hester jumps from the carriage to help the unfortunate fellow realising that in d ...more
Andreia ❤The Butterfly Lover❤ Living to read
"Like any lonely person I trusted too quickly. Let my heart believe it had found a home. I kept her in my dreams". ...more
Umut Rados
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
Well, it has become apparent today, that apart from Purcells debut novel, The Silent Companions the other two that I've read, which includes this one, are definitely lacking in plot and tension.

I have had Bone China on my list for some time, and considering how much I loved "The Silent Companions" I was hoping for something just as good. Unfortunately, this just wasn't the case.

I must state, Purcell writes tremendously well, and I enjoy her style, but without a decent plot, there simply isn't a
Sep 26, 2020 rated it liked it
2,5 stars
I thought the beginning of the story very promising but as it progressed it became less interesting. An OK read.
A serviceable gothic novel stuffed with so many characters and subplots that it begins to trip up over itself... which probably makes it even more authentically gothic, I suppose. After leaving her previous role in disgrace, Esther Stevens has reinvented herself as 'Hester Why' and fled to the Cornish coast. Employed at a forbidding house named Morvoren, she finds herself tasked with caring for the near-mute Miss Pinecroft, whose household is dominated by her superstitious maid Creeda. Flashback ...more
Joanna Smith
I enjoyed this book much more than ‘The Silent Companions’ and Laura Purcell is becoming a great historical novelist. The book is well researched and the characters are emotionally developed and intriguing. Four stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
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.
Oct 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
Bone China marks the return of critically acclaimed writer Ms Purcell in a whole new gothic historical thriller which really packs a punch. Full of dark, disturbing elements and a spooky and almost claustrophobic atmosphere, we are treated to compulsively readable tale and one that is difficult to put down once it has you in its grasp. Set in Morvoren House, an isolated and eerie building standing alone on the stunning but often harsh Cornish coastline, we enter a world of myth, superstition and ...more
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
Genre: Historical Fiction/Mystery
Type: Standalone
POV: Shifting – First person & third person POV

Hester Why arrived in Cornwall with a hope for a fresh beginning as the new live-in nurse. Running from her troubled past, little did she know Morvoren House held its own secret, festering into the household in the last 40 years. As she tried to help them with the truth, she must toe it delicately or risked shattering everything she believed in.

This book turned out to be different than I tho
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.
Aug 25, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  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
lucky little cat
The definitive blue willow china pattern horror story has yet to be written, because this ain't it.

But we'll always have Don Moyer's Things Could Be Worse mock-willow mugs

Jamesian unreliable narrator can't decide if she's to blame for all the disasters left trailing in her wake, or whether it could be the Cornish pixies. You've seen this screw turn before.
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
May 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
4 Stars.
Oct 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
I loved Laura Purcell's first novel, The Silent Companions, and this certainly didn't disappoint. It's a spooky glory of the highest order. The setting of a sea-blasted, salt-crusted house on the Cornish cliffs is so atmospheric and creepy; I loved all the details about how bone china is made (no spoilers, though I would have liked a little more leaning-in to the horror of that at the end); and the emotional journey of the protagonist was intriguing. Already looking forward to Purcell's next! ...more
Oct 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
Another creepy offering from Laura Purcell that I perhaps didn't enjoy as much as her others. Happily I found much of my beloved gothic gloom to wallow in, mist, bleak cliffs, fairy folklore, superstition, fainting and fatal bouts of consumption abound, but the main character Esther/Hester, left me wanting. She was somewhat irritating and unlikeable (which is not necessarily a problem in itself) but her back story wasn't filled out enough. Events that had occurred in her life previously, were al ...more
Literary Han
Well that was an odd read.

Like all of Purcell’s books you are left with questions unanswered and I do enjoy that aspect!

The writing was easy to read and very reminiscent of Victorian England.

However, there was little plot and I found it tedious at times.

An average read

I would recommend for spooky vibes

Hannah xoxo
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Wirral Libraries ...: Bone China 1 4 Apr 08, 2021 06:49AM  

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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

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