Crimson and Bone
A dark, gripping story of love and obsession from bestselling author Marina Fiorato, perfect for fans of The Crimson Petal and the White. London, 1853. Annie Stride is a beautiful, flame-haired young woman from the East End of London. She is also a whore. On a bleak January night Annie stands on Waterloo Bridge, watching the icy waters of the Thames writhe beneath her as she contemplates throwing herself in. At the last minute she's rescued by a handsome young man. Her saviour, Francis Maybrick Gill, is a talented artist. He takes Annie as his muse, painting her again and again and transforming her from a fallen woman into society's darling, taking her far away from her old life. But there is darkness underpinning Annie's lavish new lifestyle. In London and in Florence, prostitutes are being murdered. There's someone out there who knows who Annie really is - and they won't let her forget where she came from...

Crimson and Bone Details

TitleCrimson and Bone
Author
FormatKindle Edition
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseMay 18th, 2017
PublisherHodder & Stoughton
Number of pages320 pages
Rating
GenreHistorical, Art, Fiction

Crimson and Bone Review

  • Cora ☕ Tea Party Princess
    April 7, 2017
    5 Words: Art, passion, family, hardship, luxury.What a glorious book.First off, it has to be said that I love Marina Fiorato's books. I love reading her feisty female characters, seeing them stand on their own. And with Crimson & Bone I was not disappointed.This is probably the darkest of the author's books so far, and it felt like there was something sinister lurking in the background of the story right from the start. Despite this darkness, there was always a shining thread of hope in the 5 Words: Art, passion, family, hardship, luxury.What a glorious book.First off, it has to be said that I love Marina Fiorato's books. I love reading her feisty female characters, seeing them stand on their own. And with Crimson & Bone I was not disappointed.This is probably the darkest of the author's books so far, and it felt like there was something sinister lurking in the background of the story right from the start. Despite this darkness, there was always a shining thread of hope in the story, and the writing was gorgeously colourful and full of description. Each person and place came alive on the page.I loved how the theme of disguise was explored, with every character and setting seemingly hiding something. No one character was truly reliable and it lent itself wonderfully to the growing feelings of dread and unease as the story progressed, even as the setting changed.This is a deliciously complex story of Victorian London, and the art and beauty hiding just beneath the surface.
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  • Louise
    May 11, 2017
    Crimson and Bone’ can be summed up in several words it was Gothic,Dark, atmospheric and artistic.I have never read a novel by Marina Fiorato so I wasn’t sure of what to expect but I was pleasantly surprised. What drew me to this particular book was the setting and the concept, I love historical fiction especially the Victorian era.This book was rich with atmosphere and descriptive writing that felt that you were alongside Annie through her journey. The characters were amazing, Annie is feisty bu Crimson and Bone’ can be summed up in several words it was Gothic,Dark, atmospheric and artistic.I have never read a novel by Marina Fiorato so I wasn’t sure of what to expect but I was pleasantly surprised. What drew me to this particular book was the setting and the concept, I love historical fiction especially the Victorian era.This book was rich with atmosphere and descriptive writing that felt that you were alongside Annie through her journey. The characters were amazing, Annie is feisty but this comes with working the streets and survival. When she is given this incredible chance to change her life she grasps it with both hands and will do everything to make sure she doesn’t return to the streets. Francis her saviour seems to be the perfect gentleman, hiring her to become a model for his latest pieces is all that is required, but some things just don’t add up.This book will have you on the edge of your seat, there is an underlying darkness to the plot that you will be aware of but just can’t put your finger on and will leave you guessing all the way through.‘Crimson and Bone’ is a fantastic Historical Fiction novel set in Victorian London and Venice, which is full of art,deceit and hope.Thank you to Hodder and Stoughton for providing me with a copy of this book
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  • Cathy
    May 9, 2017
    Read my review here https://whatcathyreadnext.wordpress.c...
  • booksofallkinds
    May 18, 2017
    This was my first time reading a book by Marina Fiorato but it will certainly not be my last.Straight away we are thrown into the story of Annie Stride, a prostitute in London in 1853, who has reached the point of desperation and is contemplating ending her life. Standing on the brink Annie is saved by an artist who sees something special about her and makes her his muse, catapulting her into a new world of beauty, art, and privilege. But all is not as it seems - a murderer is on the loose and t This was my first time reading a book by Marina Fiorato but it will certainly not be my last.Straight away we are thrown into the story of Annie Stride, a prostitute in London in 1853, who has reached the point of desperation and is contemplating ending her life. Standing on the brink Annie is saved by an artist who sees something special about her and makes her his muse, catapulting her into a new world of beauty, art, and privilege. But all is not as it seems - a murderer is on the loose and they know who Annie is...CRIMSON & BONE by Marina Fiorato develops at a good, steady pace with plenty of colour and vibrant description to really capture your imagination. Yet, always in the background, there is a sense of darkness and doom hovering, waiting for an opportunity to pounce, which adds a delicious edge to this tale. Throughout the novel, I connected with the characters even though they all seem to have secrets to hide. Constantly questioning my opinions while reading, the ending leaves no stone unturned as surprising truths are revealed. CRIMSON & BONE by Marina Fiorato is a compelling story of art, beauty, danger and lies, and I cannot wait to read everything this author has written so far. It is an exquisitely dark historical novel that will keep you gripped throughout. *I voluntarily reviewed this book from the Publisher
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  • Book Literati
    May 18, 2017
    Marina Fiorato is one of my favourite historical novelists. Her books regularly combine my favourite subjects; history, art and Italy all of which are part of Crimson & Bone. This book has a slightly darker, more gothic feel to it than her previous novels. To stay with an art metaphor this novel is like a Caravaggio painting; the light and focus draw your eye to the main characters but the darkness surrounding them is always threatening to encroach on them.The plot is similar to Pygmalion in Marina Fiorato is one of my favourite historical novelists. Her books regularly combine my favourite subjects; history, art and Italy all of which are part of Crimson & Bone. This book has a slightly darker, more gothic feel to it than her previous novels. To stay with an art metaphor this novel is like a Caravaggio painting; the light and focus draw your eye to the main characters but the darkness surrounding them is always threatening to encroach on them.The plot is similar to Pygmalion in that Frances Maybrick Gill takes Annie and raises her up in society by teaching her how to behave, speak and act like a lady. As a character Frances seems the hero of this book in his saving Annie from her death and giving her a chance at a better life, but there is something that makes you feel uncomfortable, that he is not all that he seems.Annie has a hard start to life, begging and stealing from when she was a child, but she hasn’t let it destroy her spirit. After her brush with death we see that her heart is in the right place and there is a warmth and gentleness to her character that evolves during the book. She also shows an aptitude for learning and is a willing student is her progression form prostitute to lady. It is from Annie’s perspective that the story is told, her progression in life and her feelings for Frances. As well as Annie, Mary Jane who was Annie’s best friend, opens each chapter telling her story leading up to her death.Marina Fiorato’s writing is beautifully lyrical in her use of language. The prose flows seamlessly which makes it pleasurable and easy to read. Her descriptive writing of London, Florence and Venice is captivating, you are transported back to the mid nineteenth century with its sights, sounds and smells. I also enjoyed her evocation of the art works, both pre-Raphaelite and Renaissance. Through language she brought the paintings to life which isn’t easy, which enriched the reading experience. If you are interested you can of course look up the paintings on the Internet, but remember Francis Maybrick Gill is a fictional character although his subject matter was commonly painted by other artists.The Crimson & Bone is an erudite and exquisite read. Full of detail with a plot that will keep you engaged from the first page to the last. This is historical fiction at its best.
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  • Angela Smith
    June 17, 2017
    I thought this was a clever idea for a story. I think the author has taken the name Annie Stride from Jack The Ripper lore although the real victim was Elizabeth Stride, but the first name was probably inspired by another ripper victim, Annie Chapman. (A sort of an amalgamation of two of his victims) Then there is Francis Maybrick Gill who is the strange Pre-Raphaelite painter. Surely his name is based upon James Maybrick , a Ripper suspect? Too many co-incidences in names for me unless I am see I thought this was a clever idea for a story. I think the author has taken the name Annie Stride from Jack The Ripper lore although the real victim was Elizabeth Stride, but the first name was probably inspired by another ripper victim, Annie Chapman. (A sort of an amalgamation of two of his victims) Then there is Francis Maybrick Gill who is the strange Pre-Raphaelite painter. Surely his name is based upon James Maybrick , a Ripper suspect? Too many co-incidences in names for me unless I am seeing something that was not there, lol. It was those references that attracted me to read the book. However, I did read the author's enjoyable book, Beatrice and Benedick so I knew it would be worth reading.This is a much darker story than the aforementioned book. Annie Stride is a young prostitute and tired of life, especially now that her only friend in the world (Mary Jane) is now dead. On a cold night, destitute, hungry and homeless, she stands on Waterloo Bridge, named The Bridge of Sighs like the one in Italy, but more for the fact it is a popular suicide site. As she is about to jump off, Annie is saved by a young, rich artist named Francis Maybrick Gill. He takes Annie in, feeds and clothes her and molds her to his requirements, taking the dirt of the streets off her literally and in reforming her manners and expanding her knowledge. All she has to do in return for him is be his model for a series of paintings.Time passes and Annie can tell all is not right with Francis, but she doesn't press too hard as she has secrets of her own that she is unable to share. They have to hastily relocate to Italy. Annie senses Francis is running away from something, something she begins to understand as time goes on and she begins to fear for her life. I liked the attention to detail, descriptions and colours as well as the art. It was a well written story and leaves you desperate for a happy ending for Annie who never really had a chance in life
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  • Clare
    May 10, 2017
    This review was originally posted at Dual ReadsCopy received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.I've been a fan of Marina Fiorato for a long, long time. I've read and loved every one of her books and I can confidently say that this is her best yet! This was compelling and dark and so, so tense right from the start and I was hooked from page one right to the end. Annie was such a wonderful character, full of self-doubt and with a dark past and all of her actions were so understan This review was originally posted at Dual ReadsCopy received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.I've been a fan of Marina Fiorato for a long, long time. I've read and loved every one of her books and I can confidently say that this is her best yet! This was compelling and dark and so, so tense right from the start and I was hooked from page one right to the end. Annie was such a wonderful character, full of self-doubt and with a dark past and all of her actions were so understandable. I could feel her anxiety not to return to her old life, I could understand her desperation and her willingness to give Frances whatever he wanted so that she could hang on to security. I can't remember the last time I was this entranced by a character. Frances of course is slightly more complicated but the progression of his character development or rather the revelation of his character was so thoroughly fascinating and realistic.Marina Fiorato is as good at writing settings as she is people - which means they feel alive! London and Venice are both cities I know and love and she brought them to life expertly, whilst Florence is somewhere I haven't yet been but she made me love it! It's so easy to get lost in her books because they feel so real and alive - everything is tangible and exciting and you just want to keep turning the pages indefinitely. It's hard to know how to talk about the plot without giving something away - and I don't want to do that because the darkness at the centre is best discovered on your own. But - imagine My Fair Lady but way creepier and more intense. I started with relief and then progressed to this niggling unease like something was going to go bad soon and then slow dawning horror and finally a tense finale. It was just so wonderfully crafted. At the beginning of each chapter you get a small snippet from Mary Jane's point of view - Mary Jane being a friend of Annie's who committed suicide shortly before the novel begins. These were the parts that caused my unease the most and definitely added to the eeriness and the sadness of the book. It also let you get to know Annie from someone else's eyes - someone who had loved her and seen the good in her in a way that Annie couldn't. Overall this novel just stunned me. Everything from characters to plot to writing to the atmosphere was about as close to perfect as a book can get. I definitely recommend this to anyone who loves historical fiction or dark stories although it might not be for those who dislike profanity or sexual content (which you probably already gathered from the blurb). Trigger Warnings:(view spoiler)[Rape, physical abuse, emotional abuse, suicide. (hide spoiler)]
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  • Julie Cohen
    April 10, 2017
    A luscious jewel of a novel, full of colour, desire and danger.
  • Karen Keane
    June 21, 2017
    It's the first time I have read a book by Marina Fiorato but I will definitely be reading another one. I loved the book from start till finish. It is a dark, brooding book about Annie a prostitute in the 1850's, who becomes an artists muse. I loved Annie as a character and enjoyed the way we saw a whole new world opening before her eyes, but all is not what it seems and there is always danger lurking in the background.
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  • Angela L
    June 6, 2017
    What a fabulous read this is. Annie Stride is a beautiful fame haired woman but, thanks to an impoverished childhood and deeply unpleasant father, she is now working as a prostitute in London. She has teamed up with a new friend, Mary Jane, and the girls are getting by. Then Mary Jane drowns and Annie (finding she is pregnant) decides to follow her and jump into the Thames from Waterloo Bridge. She is saved by Francis, an up and coming painter who re-invents her. She becomes his muse and follows What a fabulous read this is. Annie Stride is a beautiful fame haired woman but, thanks to an impoverished childhood and deeply unpleasant father, she is now working as a prostitute in London. She has teamed up with a new friend, Mary Jane, and the girls are getting by. Then Mary Jane drowns and Annie (finding she is pregnant) decides to follow her and jump into the Thames from Waterloo Bridge. She is saved by Francis, an up and coming painter who re-invents her. She becomes his muse and follows him from London to Florence and Venice.Is Francis as altruistic as he seems though? Whilst she has a comfortable existence now she has no real idea of who Francis is, his past remains a mystery. As the book develops it seems clear that Francis is perhaps not what he seems and may be hiding a dangerous secret.This book is really absorbing and I finished it within a couple of days as I really didn't want to put it down. Lush descriptions of the good and bad of London and Italy really draw you into the story and I was sorry when it ended. I shall definitely seek out other works by this author.
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  • SJH (A Dream of Books)
    May 12, 2017
    I am always eager to read anything by Marina Fiorato because her stories are captivating and her writing is beautifully lyrical and descriptive. Her newest offering, ‘Crimson and Bone’, was a real treat and I devoured it in a couple of evenings. The story focuses on a common prostitute, Annie Stride, who at the beginning of the book is ready to end it all. Life has not been kind to her and down on her luck, she decides that she doesn’t want to live anymore. Events however, take a different turn, I am always eager to read anything by Marina Fiorato because her stories are captivating and her writing is beautifully lyrical and descriptive. Her newest offering, ‘Crimson and Bone’, was a real treat and I devoured it in a couple of evenings. The story focuses on a common prostitute, Annie Stride, who at the beginning of the book is ready to end it all. Life has not been kind to her and down on her luck, she decides that she doesn’t want to live anymore. Events however, take a different turn, when she is saved by a handsome painter, Francis Maybrick Gill, who offers her comfort and safety in return for her becoming his model. At the beginning of each chapter, Annie’s story is accompanied by that of Mary Jane who was Annie’s best friend. At the start of the book, I wasn’t entirely sure why this was included, but as Annie’s story progresses, it made a lot more sense and all the threads of their stories wove together brilliantly at the end.My favourite part of the book was actually the beginning which was set in London. It was interesting to see Annie adjust to her new surroundings and gradually become more refined under Francis’s tutelage. She revels in no longer having to share her body with a man and in being protected by someone with seemingly pure and good motives. The other two parts of the book are set in Florence and Venice. I could sense Marina Fiorato’s love of these places in the way the language of the book flowed so easily in these sections and in the way she described Annie’s surroundings. The tension built throughout as the story headed towards a revealing and shocking finale. I was utterly gripped until the final page as revelations about the main characters come to light. Overall, 'Crimson and Bone' was a hugely entertaining read and one that I wouldn't hesitate to recommend.
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  • Dramatika
    May 26, 2017
    It is nothing like The Crimson Petal and The White, which is exceptional novel like no other. This book is an entertaining historical thriller, with exciting hints at Jack the Ripper crimes. There is a mysterious artist who paints fallen girls in vivid scenes, one of the Pre Raphaelites group. If you ever seen paintings from this movement, you will be able to imagine bold colors and amazing poetry of these works which add a special oomph to the reading. I've been to the exhibition of this group It is nothing like The Crimson Petal and The White, which is exceptional novel like no other. This book is an entertaining historical thriller, with exciting hints at Jack the Ripper crimes. There is a mysterious artist who paints fallen girls in vivid scenes, one of the Pre Raphaelites group. If you ever seen paintings from this movement, you will be able to imagine bold colors and amazing poetry of these works which add a special oomph to the reading. I've been to the exhibition of this group a few years ago and still remember the impression of fairy tales in bright colors and presice drawing work. The book reminded me a little bit of Painted Girls, although here the ending and a heroind is too conventional. Great read for the plane or a beach.
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  • Jo
    June 2, 2017
    Annie is a prostitute in Victorian London. She's about to throw herself off a bridge when a young gentleman rescues her and takes her home. And so begins her relationship with Pre-Raphaelite painter Francis Maybrick Gill. Loved the dark tone and mystery of this as well as the settings in London and Italy.
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  • Kailey
    June 20, 2017
    Good start but I got quite bored in the middle.
  • Vicki
    May 24, 2017
    Full review posted here: http://lilmissvixreads.blogspot.co.uk...I've always loved the Pre-Raphaelite era (a love cultivated by Aiden Turner's turn as Dante Gabriel Rosetti in BBC's Desperate Romantics series - if you haven't seen it check it out), and Marina captures the essence of the time effortlessly.Weeks after her only friend Mary Jane met a watery end Annie Stride is standing on Waterloo Bridge preparing to jump. Passing by is promising artist Francis Maybrick Gill, who steps in and saves Full review posted here: http://lilmissvixreads.blogspot.co.uk...I've always loved the Pre-Raphaelite era (a love cultivated by Aiden Turner's turn as Dante Gabriel Rosetti in BBC's Desperate Romantics series - if you haven't seen it check it out), and Marina captures the essence of the time effortlessly.Weeks after her only friend Mary Jane met a watery end Annie Stride is standing on Waterloo Bridge preparing to jump. Passing by is promising artist Francis Maybrick Gill, who steps in and saves her life. He makes Annie an offer she can't refuse, and she can't believe her luck. What starts out initially as a kind of Pygmalion retelling slowly descends into something more dark and sinister. There's a sense of tension and unease underpinning the entire novel, that slowly builds as it goes on. I had my suspicions about what had happened to Annie's friend but the details are kept vague until the dramatic final chapters when the truth is revealed in all its macabre glory.The final third of the novel I read in one sitting - I'd only intended reading for five minutes before bed and before I knew it two hours had passed. By the end I felt like I had taken a journey with Annie, from the lowest echelons of society to its dizzying heights. Wherever life took her her past was never far away, and I genuinely didn't know how things would turn out for her.The visual imagery in this novel is striking - the red and the white, the crimson and the bone. Annie's golden hair, Francis' grey eyes. It is a world of colour, as vivid as a Pre-Raphaelite painting. The settings too are wonderfully depicted. From the dark underbelly of Victorian London to the beauty of Venice Marina created a world that I looked forward to immersing myself in as often as I could. She says in her acknowledgements that she hopes there is beauty to be found amidst the darkness, and there is. It is the combination and contrast of the two that creates such an richly compelling atmosphere that draws you in and keeps you reading.Dark, enthralling, and opulent Crimson and Bone is a novel of love, life and obsession.***Thanks to Bookbridgr for providing a copy of this book in exchange for a review!***
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  • Nilay Mustafa
    May 10, 2017
    A captivating and compelling read. From the steady build up of narrative to the explosive conclusion, keeps you on the edge of your seat.A skilfully structured and well written novel, with cleverly hidden clues, from the very beginning, keeping you hooked for answers and more.Nothing is left unanswered and shocking revelations await the end.
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