Faber assures us that these stories can be standalone or read as supplementary to Crimson Petal. In reality, they will only mean anything to readers who have read his magnum opus and want more.
Faber’s style is as seductive as ever, but fans will be disappointed that the stories shed no real light on the ambiguous ending to Crimson Petal. Instead, they create more speculation.
In fact, the foreword proves the most engaging part of the book. Citing some of the feedback that Faber received for Crimson Petal, he reveals how readers were full of praise for the writing, frustrated by the tantalising cliffhanger, and desperate for a sequel. Far from satiating our curiosity, I suspect The Apple will just spark a fresh bout of aggrieved fan mail. VP