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About the book
  • Published: 25 April 2019
  • ISBN: 9781473531789
  • Imprint: BBC Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 368

Gentleman Jack

The Real Anne Lister The Official Companion to the BBC Series

The diaries that inspired a major new eight-part BBC One drama starting Suranne Jones (Doctor Foster) and created, written and directed by Sally Wainwright (Last Tango In Halifax, Happy Valley)

Meet Anne Lister, the 18th Century landowner, industrialist, explorer and lesbian, and your new feminist icon.

The basis for a major new BBC drama series staring Suranne Jones, Gentleman Jack: The Diaries of Anne Lister is a remarkable and unlikely love story, set in the complex, changing world of Halifax - the cradle of the industrial revolution.

After years of exotic travel, Anne Lister returns to Halifax, West Yorkshire in 1832, determined to transform the fate of her faded ancestral home, Shibden Hall. To restore Shibden to its former glory, Anne must re-open her coal mines and marry well. Charismatic, single-minded and swashbuckling - she dressed head-to-foot in black and charmed her way into high society - Anne has no intention of marrying a man. Instead she has set her sights on the wealthy socialite, Ann Walker …

With a foreword by Sally Wainwright (Last Tango In Halifax, Happy Valley) and additional writing by researcher Anne Choma, Gentleman Jack: The Anne Lister Diaries tells Anne's story in her own words, though the historical diaries she left behind. Revealing the most intimate details of her life - including her relationships with her family, her lovers and her rivals - in never-before-seen extracts.

  • Pub date: 25 April 2019
  • ISBN: 9781473531789
  • Imprint: BBC Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 368

About the Authors

Sally Wainwright

Sally Wainwright is a BAFTA award-winning writer and director. Her shows include Happy Valley, Last Tango in Halifax, To Walk Invisible, Scott & Bailey and At Home with the Braithwaites.

Anne Choma

Anne Choma is a writer and historical researcher, specialising in the life and times of Anne Lister. She lives in Yorkshire.

Praise for Gentleman Jack

“Brilliant and accessible”

Suranne Jones, actress and television Producer

“Top 20 audio books of 2019”

The Guardian

“A probing and page-turning study… full of original insights and freshly decoded material… the best one-volume intro to the astonishing Anne Lister”

Emma Donoghue, International best selling author of ‘Room', screen writer and Academy Award Winner


DIVA Magazine


Radio Times Book Club Choice

“How often I have wished for a book like this, which goes deep into the real life of a historical figure portrayed on the screen.”

Caroline Donahue, The Secret Library Podcast

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