Do you like strong, flawed and inherent compelling female narrators? Do you enjoy reading new twists and interpretations of old fairytales? Does historical fiction with excellent place-as-character for both Versailles and Venice appeal to your reading tastes? Do you like a little magic subtly interwoven into your historical fiction? Are you constantly looking for a novel with length that will keep you engaged and curious from start to end? I put it down when I reluctantly finished, and I immediately wanted to start it all over again; to spend more time in this world, and with these distinctive characters.
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Forsyth, a PhD candidate in fairy tale retellings, reflects her depth of knowledge in this captivating novel that enchants with its gorgeous narrative and memorable characters who discover how the choices we make define and bind us.
Full of palace intrigue, dark magic, romance, and lush, evocative descriptions, this is historical fiction at its finest. She convincingly conveys a fairy tale-like quality in her writing and peppers the narrative with historical detail and some interesting twists that neatly tie together the strands of the story.
Compulsively unputtdownable. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.
Reader Reviews Mary G. The book is divided into three strands. The first is the story of French noblewoman, Charlotte-Rose, who is credited as the author of Rapunzel.
The third is the story of Rapunzel herself: Margherita, the daughter of an impoverished Venetian mask-maker and his wife. Bitter Greens is clever, original, and well-written. I hope Kare Forsyth plans to re-imagine other classic fairy tales. Rita H. Bitter Greens is a weaving of three stories within one which captivates and binds the reader as surely as the heroines are captivated and bound within the stories.
Based upon the fairy tale Rapunzel, this a historical novel to be read, re-read and shared. Witches, courtesans, inquisitors, innocents and princes move in and out as the stories move through two centuries in Venice and France. Forsythe is truly a master of words and her love of words sparkles throughout and paints scenes so alive that I felt I was truly a part of the story.
I felt the hunger, despair, hope, fear and, yes, thrill of seduction and love contained in these pages. This book was so fascinating that I read the afterword and acknowledgements with almost as much eagerness as I had read the story.
I think that bookclubs would be enthralled and that discussions would be lively and spell-binding. Lois Wilmington, DE "Bitter Greens", history and magic well combined Kate Forsyth has taken a puzzle from the world of fairy tale authors and written an intriguing novel, which combines the world of courtly life in 17th century France with one of my favorite fairy tales.
She tells three stories, braiding them together one strand at a time so accurately that you always know where you are, but not necessarily where you are going. The conclusion is a tour de force, with all explained very satisfactorily. I recommend this book highly. Tilli F. It seemed to be two unrelated stories. Then I was absorbed. The life and times of Charlotte Rose was very interesting.
Then I was frustrated. And by the end I was satisfied and sated by these two stories! And I finally understood that the one was originally told by the other, and that both were richly detailed and alive.
A very good read. April P. This book was a very good read. I enjoyed how European history was intertwined with the lives of many of the women throughout the story.
The author does an amazing job of creating an evil character that the reader will undoubtedly feel compassion for. The magic woven throughout pulls the reader in and keeps you wanting more and the ending is completely bittersweet! Peggy K. The youngest is the center of a well known fairy tale. The second will be her tormentor and the narrator a French aristocrat imprisoned herself in a convent. The truth behind the fairy tale is very different and this story will change forever the way you see the tale of Rapunzel.
Readers will be caught up in the story of each of these women and perhaps there is some compassion to be shared for the evil witch. The book will appeal to teens and adults. It is a great read for any time. Book clubs can discuss the harshness of life in those times and how this story became the fairy tale we all know. I am very glad that I asked for this book.