Introduction and Acknowledgments

The true test of a great love story is whether it speaks to the ages. North and South is such a story. Written over a century and a half ago, Elizabeth Gaskell’s novel tells of a love that emerges amid the confusion and commotion of England’s Industrial Revolution. Her characters are vibrant with emotion and suffer the trials of change and circumstance.

In 2004, the BBC’s brilliant adaptation of this novel created legions of swooning fans and introduced this timeless story to a new generation. No doubt, the success of this production was largely due to an amazing cast, headed by Daniela Denby-Ashe and Richard Armitage as Margaret Hale and John Thornton.

A Heart for Milton shines with the borrowed light of all these great artists. I have taken the characters from the book and endeavored to make them come alive with equal inspiration from the actors of the film production.

My tale weaves a change in the original plot to create a wholly original sequence of events that extends beyond Gaskell’s written conclusion.

My aim has always remained the same – to depict more of the bliss of new love, which was so achingly brief in Gaskell’s work.

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