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Bitter Greens - Kate Forsyth


Published: 1st March 2013
In Stock. Ships today or next business day from Australia
RRP $19.99

A lovely stew of sex, fairytales and, well, sex really. THE AGE. An exquisite rendering of the story behind the Rapunzel fairy tale.

Charlotte-Rose de la Force has been banished from the court of Versailles by the Sun King, Louis XIV, after a series of scandalous love affairs. She is comforted by an old nun, Sœur Seraphina, who tells her the tale of a young girl who, a hundred years earlier, is sold by her parents for a handful of Bitter Greens ...

After Margherita's father steals a handful of parsley, wintercress and rapunzel from the walled garden of the courtesan Selena Leonelli, he is threatened with having both hands cut off ... unless he and his wife give away their little girl.

Selena is the famous red-haired muse of the artist Tiziano, first painted by him in 1512 and still inspiring him at the time of his death, sixty-four years later. Called La Strega Bella, Selena is at the centre of Renaissance life in Venice, a world of beauty and danger, seduction and betrayal, love and superstition.

Locked away in a tower, growing to womanhood, Margherita sings in the hope that someone will hear her. One day, a young man does ...

Three women, three lives, three stories, braided together to create a compelling tale of desire, obsession, black magic and the redemptive power of love.


Grab it Live it Love it!


Intricately woven and hard to put down. The characters will grab you and pull you in at every turn. Be prepared for a closely a detailed read. You will not regret it.


I'm going to have to read this one again and again!


What a departure from the Kate Forsyth I have read in the past. Absolutely thrilling. Wonderful plot interwoven with very interesting and arresting characters. A wonderful read.

Gleneorie, NSW


Great Read


Loved it, was a different take on the old fairy tales,



Sweet Reading


Magic flows through this book as easily as air. Kate Forsyth once again displays her writing genius in a swirl of creativity and captivating reading. Definitely a must-read!

Sydney, AU


Wonderful Story!


Bitter Greens is a magical and wonderful retelling of the Rapunzel story. It tells the stories of three different characters and how they're lives are connected: writer Charlotte-Rose, witch turned nun Soeur Seraphina and a young girl Margherita. It combines fact and history with fairytale as it intertwines the life of real life author Charlotte-Rose (the original author of the Rapunzel story) in with her Rapunzel story. I particularly love the way she has been able to combine the stories of three characters across time, building around common themes. It's a very well written novel and the time, effort and research she put into the story is partially impressive. It's a truly magical story which everyone should read!

Adelaide, AU


Not to be missed!


I was completely enchanted by this dark and twisted tale. I will never see Rapunzel in the same light again. It's the best book I've read all year.

Newcastle, AU


Pure Magic


This book is beautifully written bringing history and fiction together seamlessly.



Bitter Greens

5.0 7


'A lovely stew of sex, fairytales and, well, sex really.'

Kate Forsyth

Kate Forsyth is the bestselling and award-winning author of more than twenty books, ranging from picture books to poetry to novels for both children and adults.

Her most recent book for adults is The Beast’s Garden, a retelling of Grimms’ Beauty and The Beast set in Nazi Germany. She has also written Bitter Greens, a retelling of the Rapunzel fairytale interwoven with the dramatic, true life story of the woman who first told the tale, the 17th century French writer, Charlotte-Rose de la Force. Her most recent book for children is The Starkin Crown, a heroic fantasy adventure set in the magical world of Estelliana, a place of wild magic and terrifying monsters.

Since The Witches of Eileanan was named a Best First Novel of 1998 by Locus Magazine, Kate has won or been nominated for numerous awards, including a CYBIL Award in the US. She's also the only author to win five Aurealis awards in a single year, for her Chain of Charms series – beginning with The Gypsy Crown - which tells of the adventures of two Romany children in the time of the English Civil War. Book 5 of the series, The Lightning Bolt, was also a CBCA Notable Book.

Kate's books have been published in 17 countries around the world, including the UK, the US, Russia, Germany, Japan, Turkey, Spain, Italy, Poland and Slovenia. She completed a doctorate in fairytale retellings at the University of Technology, as well as a BA in Literature and a MA in Creative Writing.

Kate is a direct descendant of Charlotte Waring, the author of the first book for children ever published in Australia, A Mother's Offering to her Children. She lives by the sea in Sydney, Australia, with her husband, three children, a rambunctious Rhodesian Ridgeback, a bad-tempered black cat, and many thousands of books.

Visit Kate Forsyth's Booktopia Author Page

ISBN: 9781741668483
ISBN-10: 1741668484
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 576
Published: 1st March 2013
Publisher: Random House Australia
Country of Publication: AU
Dimensions (cm): 19.9 x 13.4  x 3.6
Weight (kg): 0.43
Edition Number: 2