Sarah Waters, who was born in Wales in 1966, began writing fiction in the mid-1990s after completing a thesis on gay and lesbian literature.
Tipping The Velvet was adapted as a television drama
She found fame when her debut novel Tipping the Velvet was adapted by screenwriter Andrew Davies in 2002.
Its explicit sex scenes created a blaze of publicity.
Her second book, Affinity, about an imprisoned spiritualist in a notorious London jail, won her the Somerset Maugham award.
Her third novel, Fingersmith, which was also adapted for TV, was shortlisted for both the Orange Prize and the Man Booker Prize in 2002.
Victorian London is the breeding ground for her first three novels but her latest, Night Watch, is set during the Blitz and follows the lives of four ordinary people living in extraordinary times.