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'What you risk reveals what you value...' The Passion is a fairy tale about survival and broken-heartedness, cruelty, obsession and madness.

Henri had a passion for Napoleon and Napoleon had a passion for chicken. From Boulogne to Moscow Henri butchered for his Emperor and never killed a single man.

Meanwhile, in Venice, the city of chance and disguises, Villanelle was born with the webbed feet of her boatman father - but in the casinos she gambled her heart and lost.

As the soldier-chef's love for Napoleon turns to hate he finds the Venetian beauty, and together they flee to the canals of darkness.

'It's a fantasy, a vivid dream... inventive and brilliant' Guardian

'As moving and funny as it is skilful, and reflects the author's formidable appetite for life' Sunday Times

'A book of great imaginative audacity and assurance...brilliantly physical (and funny) detail" Times Literary Supplement

'Its concentrated, beautifully detailed prose recalls the diction of fairy tales; its plot incorporates their magic, their shrewd wit and brutality...a deeply imagined and beautiful book, often arrestingly so' New York Times

Reviews

It's a fantasy, a vivid dream... inventive and brilliant

Guardian

As moving and funny as it is skilful, and reflects the author's formiddable appetite for life

Sunday Times

A book of great imaginative audacity and assurance...brilliantly physical (and funny) detail

Times Literary Supplement

Its concentrated, beautifully detailed prose recalls the diction of fairy tales; its plot incorporates their magic, their shrewd wit and brutality...a deeply imagined and beautiful book, often arrestingly so

New York Times

Lyrical prose penetrates to the heart of things... She knows how to speak plain truth and at the same time satisfy our longing for the fabulous. She's telling you stories. Trust her

Washington Post

An explosively imaginative writer

London Free Press

A historical novel quite different from any other...written with a living passion, an eyewitness immediacy... Winterson is a master of her material, a writer in whom great talent deeply abides

Vanity Fair

Recalls Garcia Marquez... Magical touches dance like highlights over the brilliance of this fairy tale about passion, gambling, madness, and androgynous ecstasy

Edmund White

The overwhelming impression of her work is one of remarkable self-confidence, and she evidently thrives on risk... As good as Poe: it dares you to laugh and stares you down

New York Review of Books

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Formats & editions

  • Paperback

    9780099598329

    September 1, 2014

    Vintage

    176 pages

    RRP $19.99

    Online retailers

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    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • EBook

    9781448113361

    October 31, 2011

    Vintage Digital

    176 pages

    Online retailers

    • Amazon Kindle AU
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