novelist, born in Pembrokeshire, Wales. A fascination with Victorian life (and her doctoral study of lesbian and gay historical fiction) gave Waters the foundation and themes of three of her novels, beginning with Tipping the Velvet (1998), which describes the developing affair between narrator Nan (one‐time oyster girl) and music‐hall male impersonator Kitty Butler. This was followed by the darker Affinity (1999), about a spiritualist in a women's prison in Victorian London. Fingersmith (2002) is another Dickensian work, teeming with Victorian character and characters: it sees orphan Sue Trinder raised into the world of pickpockets, and drawn into a plan to rob a wealthy heiress. Waters moved away from familiar territory with The Night Watch (2006), set in London during the Second World War; beginning in 1947 and moving backwards to 1941, this is the story of four Londoners and their responses to surrounding events.