So, I’ve just now finished The Crimson Petal and the White and escaped the iron grip this novel has had on me for the past 4 days.
Overall, I thought it was a brilliantly written novel but the ending left much to be desired and now I am just dying to know:
[spoiler]Where did Sugar take Sophie? Where did they eventually end up?
What exactly happened to Agnes? Why didn’t anyone think to check the asylums to see if she’d been taken there?
Was that really her body dredged up out of the river or did she travel on to some other location under her delusion of finding the “Convent” and eventually die from her brain tumor?
And what becomes of William Rackham?
I’d like to think that it ends like this:
Sugar takes Sophie far away and they start a life over together as mother and daughter. Sugar certainly had enough money saved up to do so.
Agnes did in fact survive but is most likely locked up in an asylum and unable to remember who she is or where she comes from. Her illness keeps her in a pleasant fog and she is under the constant delusion that she is in the “Convent” and being cared for by the Sisters.
William Rackham eventually gives up the search for Sugar and his daughter and remarries. His business goes under and he lives out his days unhappily and discontent but always struggling to keep up appearances. In his final days, he finds himself reading over Sugar’s manuscript and pining for her and cursing himself for being such a fool.
How would you have ended the book? What questions would you have answered and how?