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  • Published: 14 November 2016
  • ISBN: 9780552779470
  • Imprint: Black Swan
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 352
  • RRP: $22.99

The Ballroom

The unputdownable historical novel from the acclaimed author of WAKE and EXPECTATION - a devastating story of love and madness at the brink of the Great War.

The unputdownable historical novel by the acclaimed and bestselling author of WAKE and EXPECTATION: a devastating story of love and madness at the brink of the Great War.

'Absolutely heart-breaking. One of the best books I've ever read' DINAH JEFFERIES, author of The Tea-Planter's Wife

'Compelling, elegant, insightful' OBSERVER

1911: Inside an asylum at the edge of the Yorkshire moors, where men and women are kept apart by high walls and barred windows, there is a ballroom vast and beautiful. For one bright evening every week they come together and dance. When John and Ella meet it is a dance that will change two lives forever.

Set over the heatwave summer of 1911, the end of the Edwardian era, THE BALLROOM tells a rivetting tale of dangerous obsession, of madness and sanity, and of who gets to decide which is which. It is a love story like no other.


Praise for Anna Hope's The Ballroom:
'Beautifully wrought, tender, heartbreaking' Sunday Express 5/5
'Moving, fascinating' Times
'A tender and absorbing love story' Daily Mail

'Unsentimental and affecting' Sunday Times

'Exquisitely good' Metro
'Absolutely fantastic . . . I'm in real awe of her writing' ELIZABETH MACNEAL, author of The Doll Factory

  • Published: 14 November 2016
  • ISBN: 9780552779470
  • Imprint: Black Swan
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 352
  • RRP: $22.99

About the author

Anna Hope

Anna Hope was educated at Wadham College, Oxford, RADA, and Birkbeck College, London. She lives in East London. WAKE is her first novel.

Also by Anna Hope

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Praise for The Ballroom

Absolutely heart-breaking. One of the best books I’ve ever read

Dinah Jefferies, author of THE TEA-PLANTER'S WIFE

A British version of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. Moving. Fascinating


An unsentimental and affecting story

Sunday Times

Compelling, elegant and insightful.


In this deeply moving book, Hope reminds us that behind everyone’s facade lies something waiting to be rent free

Irish Times

An original, brilliant, evocative novel

Chris Cleave

A heartbreaking story of how love can flourish in the darkest of times

Cathy Rentzenbrink, The Bookseller

Part social commentary, part mystery and part dangerous liaison, this poignant story casts an unflinching gaze at the historic treatment of mental health disorders.

Financial Times

Such a magnificent setting definitely demands a story that delivers, all guns blazing. It does, and then some . . . Fiction at it’s finest.

Irish Independent



An exquisite love story

Good Housekeeping

A terrifying, moving and uplifting story

February Hot Read, Woman and Home

A poignant against-the-odds love story


Tender . . . Hope is the emotion that unspools the delicate connections between these brilliantly drawn characters

Psychologies Magazine

The Ballroom is a beautifully wrought novel, a tender, heartbreaking and insightful exploration of the longings that survive in the most inhospitable environments.

Sunday Express 5/5 stars

Magnificent…a luminary of historical fiction…writing history from the margins, the personal stories behind the era, she delivers profound, poignant stories that stir the emotions.

Press Association

All the intensity and lyricism of Hope’s debut, Wake

Daily Mail

The Ballroom confirms her as a novelist of immense power...Exquisitely good. Sensitive, engrossing and highly recommended


The Ballroom is a beautiful, gripping, heart-wrenching, thought-provoking book. I was so enthralled, I read it in an evening, unwilling to put it down.


An atmospheric and thought provoking love story


An absorbing read from beginning to end . . . I'm already excited to see what Anna Hope does next.


This novel is at once romantic, thought-provoking and extremely poignant, with a rich narrative and an ending that moved me to tears


Gripping final chapters ramp up the suspense towards a hearth-wrenching conclusion ...explores the tensions and trials of the human condition with grace and insight.

New York Times

Absolutely fantastic . . . I'm in real awe of her writing.

Elizabeth Macneal, author of THE DOLL FACTORY

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