Lorna,

If you're using ZF, I have a fairly simple wrapper that utilizes a custom dispatch and ties into your bootstrap so that you can bootstrap specific items.

See https://github.com/mwillbanks/Zend_Gearman

It does need some slight refactoring since a little too much is happening in the constructor but it is quite nice. Been using it in production for over 6 months on a heavy traffic site.