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Penguin Canada, Summer 2019

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Ellie and the Harpmaker
By (author): Hazel Prior
9780735238077 Paperback, Trade English General Trade FICTION / Women Aug 06, 2019
$24.95 CAD
Active 6.09 x 9 x 0.89 in 336 pages Penguin Canada Viking
“Uplifting escapism…fresh and sweet.”—Washington Post

Discover the charming and heartwarming debut novel which shows us that love can be found in the most unexpected places…

Meet Ellie. She’s perfectly happy living her quiet life with her husband, Clive. Happy to wander the English countryside and write the occasional poem that nobody will read; happy to dream of all the things she hasn’t yet managed to do.

Meet Dan. He thinks all he needs is the time and space to make harps in his isolated barn, deep in the countryside. He enjoys being on his own, far away from other people and - crucially - far away from any risk of surprises.

But what Ellie and Dan are about to learn that sometimes, you don’t find love—love finds you…

Story Locale: Exmoor, England

Publication History: Original Trade Paperback

WE LOVE NOVELS WITH QUIRKY CHARACTERS FINDING HAPPINESS: This delightful debut fits the trend of bestselling success of books such as Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine and The Rosie Project.

UNUSUAL AND CHARMING CHARACTERS: Dan’s earnestness and eccentricity is balanced by Ellie’s engaging combination of dreaminess and practicality; the supporting cast features surprises that will make readers smile—including a pheasant named Phineas with a big personality of his own.

UNIQUELY AUTHENTIC: The author is a professional harpist who lives in Exmoor, lending vivid authenticity to the musical theme as well as to the setting.

FANTASTIC PRH PARTNERS: We publish alongside Berkley in the US (for whom this is a lead summer title) and following Transworld in the UK, who will publish in spring 2019.

WE ARE COMMITTED TO THIS NEW AUTHOR: Like our colleagues in the US and the UK, we believe that Hazel Prior has a very bright future and we have all committed to a second book, tentatively scheduled for summer 2020.



HAZEL PRIOR is a harpest who lives on Exmoor with her husband and a huge ginger cat. Originally from Oxford, she has toured extensively with singing groups and has played at many festivals and theatres. She has published stories in literary magazines and has won numerous writing competitions in the UK. Ellie and the Harpmaker is her debut novel; she is working on her second.

Author Residence: Exmoor, England

Author Hometown: Oxford, England

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Publicity: Review coverage in Toronto Star, Chatelaine etc.

Summer reading round ups

Praise for Ellie and the Harpmaker:
“How I loved this book! An uncommonly lovely story told with elegance, insight, and so much heart. Hazel Prior’s brilliant debut will delight.” —Kristan Higgins, New York Times bestselling author of Good Luck With That

“‘Ellie and the Harpmaker’ is uplifting escapism…fresh and sweet, rejuvenated by a set of unusual characters…Prior’s lyricism feels like a warm song. This is a story that will make you want to take a walk through the woods and collect pebbles from a stream, then go home to dine on plum-jam sandwiches. And maybe, like the old harpist’s mandate, shed a tear and laugh a little.” —Washington Post

“With the character-driven charm of Liane Moriarty’s and Sara Baume’s novels…delightfully heartwarming…guaranteed to tug at readers’ heartstrings.” —Booklist 

”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, international bestselling author of The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper

“Wow, what a love story. Ellie and the Harpmaker is uplifting and full of heart, and I couldn’t put it down! Perfect for fans of Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine.” —Jo Thomas, author of Late Summer in the Vineyard

“Prior’s debut resonates with a clear voice, depicting love evolving from a friendship based upon genuine acts of kindness…Ellie and Dan, both delightful, down-to-earth characters, selflessly put each other’s needs ahead of their own, and fans of fast-paced romantic stories will enjoy watching them discover true happiness together.“ —Publishers Weekly

”A wonderful, genuine, heartwarming, funny, and beautifully written book. If you love Kate Atkinson, Jojo Moyes, or Gail Honeyman, you will fall in love with Ellie and the Harpmaker.“ —Rebecca Tinnelly, author of Never Go There

”A lyrical, almost fairytale-like novel, as resonant and mysterious as a Celtic harp. The novel shines with all the grace and harmony of a handmade instrument, and shows us what can happen when a woman yearning for meaning meets a solitary man dedicated to his craft…and they both decide to open their hearts to possibility." —Juliet Blackwell, New York Times bestselling author of The Lost Carousel of Provence
“A melodious and heartwarming debut about love, friendship, and a secret that could change everything. This one is special.” Emily Liebert, USA Today bestselling author of Some Women and Pretty Revenge

“The assembly of words casts a kind of spell…Enchanting.”  —The Calgary Herald

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