It's Pride Month and every day, N. N. Light's Book Heaven will feature a book and/or an author from the LGBTQ+ community. The Paying Guests is a psychological suspense dealing with secret lives and sexuality in post World War One London. It's a masterful piece of fiction and one I couldn't put down.
Title: The Paying Guests
Author: Sarah Waters
Genre: Suspense, Literary Fiction
A truly extraordinary, masterful novel of brilliant storytelling, sensuality, and psychological suspense set in post-WWI London, from the internationally bestselling author of The Little Stranger. Three-time Booker Prize finalist Sarah Waters is at the height of her powers.
A psychological and dramatic tour de force from beloved international bestseller Sarah Waters. The year is 1922, and London is tense. Ex-servicemen are disillusioned, the out-of-work and the hungry are demanding change. In South London, in a large silent house now bereft of brothers, husband, and even servants, life is about to be transformed, as Mrs Wray and her daughter Frances are obliged to take in lodgers.
With the arrival of Lilian and Leonard Barber, the routines of the house and the lives of its inhabitants will be shaken up in unexpected ways. And as passions mount and frustration gathers, no one can foresee just how far, and how devastatingly, the disturbances will reach.
Waters proves once again that her eye for the telling details of class and character that draw people together as well as tear them apart is second to none in this masterpiece of psychological tension and emotional depth.
Sarah Waters was born in Wales in 1966. She has written six novels: Tipping the Velvet (1998), which won the Betty Trask Award; Affinity (1999), which won the Somerset Maugham Award, the Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year Award and was shortlisted for the Mail on Sunday / John Llewellyn Rhys Prize; Fingersmith (2002), which was short-listed for the Man Booker Prize and the Orange Prize, and won the South Bank Show Award for Literature and the CWA Historical Dagger; The Night Watch (2006), which was shortlisted for the Orange Prize and the Man Booker Prize; The Little Stranger (2009), which was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize and the South Bank Show Literature Award; and The Paying Guests (2014) which was been shortlisted for The Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction and was published in paperback in June 2015.
She was included in Granta's prestigious list of 'Best of Young British Novelists 2003', and in the same year was voted Author of the Year by both publishers and booksellers at the British Book Awards and the BA Conference, and won the Waterstones Author of the Year Award.
Adaptations include Tipping the Velvet (multi award winning, BAFTA nominated) by Sally Head Productions for BBC; Fingersmith (BAFTA nominated) by Sally Head Productions for BBC; Affinity (several awards worldwide) by Box TV for ITV; The Night Watch for BBC. The Little Stranger is in development as a feature film with Potboiler Productions, adapted by Lucinda Coxon and to be directed by Lenny Abrahamson, and TV rights to The Paying Guests have also been optioned by Potboiler Productions.
Sarah co-wrote an original stage show with Christopher Green, The Frozen Scream, which premiered in December 2014 at the Cardiff Millennium Centre and the Birmingham Hippodrome. A stage adaptation of Fingersmith (written by Alexa Junge, directed by Bill Rauch) premiered at The Oregon Shakespeare Festival in February 2015; and Tipping the Velvet (written by Laura Wade, and directed by Lyndsey Turner for the Lyric Theatre, Hammersmith and the Edinburgh Lyceum) premiered on 19th September 2015. The Night Watch was adapted for the stage for the first time, for the Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester by Oliver-nominated playwright Hattie Naylor, and directed by Rebecca Gatward, in 2016.
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