Acclaimed British fiction author, biographer, memoir writer, and literary critic. Her best-known works include Diary of an Ordinary Woman, Georgy Girl, and Precious Lives.
After graduating from Somerville College, Oxford with a degree in history, she taught briefly at Barnsbury Girls' School in London.
She published Keeping the World Away, a slightly fictionalized biography of Welsh artist Gwen John, in 2006.
She married broadcast journalist and writer Hunter Davies.
She published an award-winning 1989 biography of poet Elizabeth Barrett Browning.