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A quirkily charming love story with heaps of warmth and humour - perfect for fans of The Keeper of Lost Things and Three Things About Elsie.

Dan Hollis lives alone, in a remote barn hidden in the woods on Exmoor. He leads a simple life and takes great pleasure in the small things – he counts the toadstools he finds on his morning walk (317), he cuts his sandwiches into triangles and arranges them geometrically on his plate, he spends his days in the workshop at the bottom of the seventeen-step staircase. For the past twenty-three years he has been making harps, choosing beautifully coloured local wood, carving and shaping it by hand, and adding his unique ‘signature’: a specially-chosen pebble that he sits in the wood. He enjoys his solitary, quiet routine.

Then, one day, Exmoor housewife Ellie Jacobs stumbles across the barn by chance as she’s walking in the woods. She’s utterly stunned by the discovery of the enchanting workshop, and Dan (taken by her surprise – and her cherry-coloured socks) gives her the gift of a beautiful cherry wood harp. But Ellie’s controlling husband Clive refuses to let her keep it – and so she begins to take lessons in secret at the barn.

Captivated by Dan’s innocent enthusiasm and infectious joy for the countryside, his life, his harps, Ellie starts to dream of escaping her loveless marriage – and so begins a story of innocent deception, unintended complications and life-changing consequences for them all.

With a cast of eccentric characters, including a pheasant named Phineas, this heart-warming, funny and quirky love story will stay with you long after you finish the last page.

Reviews

Ellie and the Harp-Maker is a beautiful love song of a story, wonderfully told with a warm heart and much hope. Hazel Prior’s writing is a lyrical delight.

Phaedra Patrick, author of THE CURIOUS CHARMS OF ARTHUR PEPPER, and THE LIBRARY OF LOST AND FOUND

Formats & editions

  • Trade Paperback

    9781787630925

    May 7, 2019

    Bantam Press

    288 pages

    RRP $32.99

    Online retailers

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    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • Hardback

    9781787630918

    May 7, 2019

    Bantam Press

    288 pages

    RRP $35.00

    Online retailers

    • Amazon
    • Angus & Robertson Bookworld
    • Booktopia
    • Dymocks
    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Boomerang Books
    • Collins Booksellers
    • Books Kinokuniya
    • QBD
    • Readings
    • Robinsons Bookshop
    • The Nile
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • EBook

    9781473562097

    May 2, 2019

    Transworld Digital

    288 pages

    Online retailers

    • Amazon Kindle AU
    • iBooks
    • Google Play EBook AU
    • Kobo
    • Booktopia
    • eBooks

Extract

1

Dan

A woman came to the barn today. Her hair was the colour of walnut wood. Her eyes were the colour of bracken in October. Her socks were the colour of cherries, which was noticeable because all the rest of her clothes were sad colours. She carried an enormous shoulder bag, canvas. It had a big buckle (square) but it was hanging open. The woman’s mouth was open too. She was shifting from one foot to the other by the door so I told her to come in. The words came out a bit mangled due to the fact I was wearing my mask. She asked what I’d said, so I took it off and also took off my ear defenders and I said it again. She came in. Her socks were very red indeed. So was her face.

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