Sarah Waters

Standard Name: Waters, Sarah
SW made her high-profile literary debut in 1998 with her first lesbian historical novel, Tipping the Velvet (which had been rejected by many publishers before it reached print). Her novels since then have been all historical and nearly all lesbian, but interestingly varied in tone and setting.
Colour photograph of Sarah Waters displayng a copy of her book "The Night Watch", 2006. She leans forward, with short blonde-streaked hair, blue eyes, and a smile, wearing a black shirt and holding a pen.
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Connections Sort descending Author name Excerpt
Intertextuality and Influence Josephine Tey
Ruth Rendell uses it as a point of reference in her crime novel Harm Done, 1999. Her investigator, Wexford, suggests to a confident young woman claiming to have been kidnapped that she in turn...
Intertextuality and Influence Angela Thirkell
Some readers dropped her because of this change. Others sent what she called hate letters.
Strickland, Margot. Angela Thirkell: Portrait of a Lady Novelist. Duckworth, 1977.
In 2010 Sarah Waters , who used this book in writing The Little Stranger, classified it as typical...
Literary responses Margaret Drabble
Lucy Scholes , reviewing The Dark Flood Rises for The Independent, was moved to quote Edward Said 's definition of a late artistic style not as harmony and resolution but as intransigence, difficulty, and...
Literary responses Iris Murdoch
The first monograph on IM was that of 1965 by A. S. Byatt , who faulted her for the inconsistency of her fiction with her expressed philosophic views. This study provoked further academic discussion, and...
Literary responses Elizabeth Taylor
One of the first to review this novel was Rosamond Lehmann ; some of her commendatory phrases are still in use in promotional material from Virago .
Beauman, Nicola. The Other Elizabeth Taylor. Persephone Books, 2009.
Today Sarah Waters (who published Tipping the...
Literary responses Josephine Tey
Nancy Ellen Talburt believes this is the best executed of [JT 's] novels, and the richest in general interest.
Bargainnier, Earl F., editor. 10 Women of Mystery. Bowling Green State University Popular Press, 1981.
Several critics agree that it is her best work. Sarah Waters observes that it...
Literary responses Angela Carter
In early 2019 Chris Power picked The Company of Wolves as one of the best of short stories.
“Bite-sized: 50 great short stories, chosen by Hilary Mantel, George Saunders and more”.
This followed a memory from Sarah Waters of her first reading of The Bloody Chamber at seventeen:...
Reception A. S. Byatt
David Jays , in an article confessing his preference for the current lionesses to the lions among British novelists—a preference, that is, for ASB , Zadie Smith , A. L. Kennedy , Sarah Waters ...
Textual Features Angela Thirkell
Her novels were becoming, it was generally agreed, more backward-looking and less generous in their presentation of character. Sarah Waters found in it a picture of mid-century middle-class fantasies and fears.
Waters, Sarah. “Behind the Book”. The London Library Magazine, No. 9, p. 10.
Textual Features Mary Elizabeth Braddon
Slopperton-on-the-Sloshy is a northern industrial town, quiet and complacent but on closer examination seething with a violence that also anchors the story's temporal frame between the Napoleonic Wars and the revolutions of 1848. Novelist Sarah Waters
Textual Features Mary Elizabeth Braddon
Peters advises Richard Marwood to feign madness to escape the scaffold, engineers his rescue from the lunatic asylum eight years later, and aids him in tracking down and gathering evidence against the fiendishly elusive North...


Victoria Park in East London was opened to the public as the first public park in Britain. (The more famous London parks belonged to the Crown.) Situated among the poor, working-class districts of the East...
January 1996
Virago Press resumed operations as an imprint of another larger company, Little Brown . Its board took the decision to sell in 1995, two years after its twentieth birthday.
22 October 2002
The Booker Prize was awarded for the first time as the Man Booker Prize, its sponsorship having passed to the Man Group , a Canadian venture capital company.
14 September 2011
The clock began ticking for a five-week period during which, under the auspices of the Society of Authors , a number of British authors and tweeters (including Sarah Waters ) collaborated on a tweetathon...