At once a compelling ghost story and an intriguing literary mystery set in 1870s London, AFFINITY brings together two very different women: Margaret Prior, a troubled middle-class spinster and Selina Dawes, a clever and beautiful spirit medium, now a prisoner at one of London’s most notorious gaols. Among the misery and wretchedness of the cells, Margaret, a prison visitor, finds herself drawn to Selina’s seeming innocence. Little does she know that her relationship with Selina will pull her into a shadowy world of unruly spirits and unseemly passions.
AFFINITY was shortlisted for the 2001 Mail on Sunday / John Llewellyn Rhys Prize. It won the Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year Award 2000 and a Somerset Maugham Award.
"Spooky, spellbinding, exquisitely written … I do believe Waters is on the way to becoming a major literary star." - Val Hennessy
"Refined, repressed and simmering … A delicious tale of Victorian spiritualism." - Independent on Sunday
"AFFINITY… may turn out to be the signature of late-twentieth century fiction in Britain." - Giles Foden, Guardian
"A work of intense and atmospheric imagination... Sarah Waters is... a kind of feminist Dickens." - Fiona Pittkethley, Telegraph
"Indeed, this is such a brilliant writer that her readers would believe anything she told them" - AN Wilson, Daily Mail