ShortBookandScribes #BookReview – Ellie and the Harp Maker by Hazel Prior @haveAharp @TransworldBooks #RandomThingsTours #BlogTour
I’m thrilled to be reviewing Ellie and the Harp Maker by Hazel Prior today. It’s such a lovely read. It’s no wonder I loved it as it’s for fans of The Keeper of Lost Things and Three Things about Elsie and I absolutely loved both of those.
My thanks to Anne Cater from Random Things Tours for the place on the tour and Hannah Bright from Bantam Press/Transworld for sending me a copy of the book for review purposes.
Sometimes it takes a chance encounter to discover what your life could be like…
Hazel Prior lives on Exmoor with her husband and a huge ginger
cat. As well as writing, she works as a harpist.
You can find Hazel at @HaveAHarp.
Meet Ellie. She’s perfectly happy with her home and her husband and her quiet life. Happy enough,
anyway. Which is why she’s so surprised to find herself drawn to an extrordinary stranger who
gives her a gift – and a fresh perspective.
Meet Dan. He thinks all he needs to be happy is the time and space to carry on making harps.
Sometimes people buy them, too. But the last thing he expects is for Ellie to walk into his life, a
whirlwind with cherry-coloured socks, bringing a string of surprises into his ordered existence.
As Ellie and Dan get to know one another, they begin to see the world – and themselves – in an
entirely new way…
Perfect for fans of The Keeper of Lost Things and Three Things About Elsie.
When a book is touted as being for fans of The Keeper of Lost Things and Three Things About Elsie then I’m pretty sure I’m going to enjoy it and I did, I loved Ellie and the Harp Maker.
Ellie is almost 36, married to Clive, and believes herself to be happy. When she stumbles across Dan Hollis and his harp barn, his very literal and forthright manner give her the opportunity to consider whether she really is truly happy or not. I loved both of the main characters. Ellie is just a lovely person, gentle and kind. She’s allowed herself to become a doormat because of that nice nature of hers. And Dan? I guess he’s somewhere on the autistic spectrum (I’m no expert). He lives in isolation until Ellie teaches him that a little variety is a good thing. He’s an utterly delightful and eccentric character who values nature. He knows about all the different kinds of wood, he takes pleasure in walking on Exmoor and he would do anything (and does!) to take care of animals.
I particularly liked the fact that harps and music play a big part of the story. Harps are not an instrument I come across very often and the descriptions of Dan making them, and the care and love he pours into doing so, were really lovely.
In fact, this is just a lovely book all round. It’s a heart-warming story of friendship and how it can develop into more. I laughed and smiled a lot, not because it’s a funny story as such, but because some of Dan’s ways are so wonderful I couldn’t help but smile.
I can’t fail to mention Phineas, the pheasant who plays a big part in the story. He was fabulous and inspired, I thought.
I found Ellie and the Harp Maker to be charming and beautifully written. The notion of a man hidden in a wood making harps feels almost like a fairytale and I was just hoping all the way through that Ellie would become a big part of Dan’s life. It was a complete pleasure from start to finish.
Hazel Prior lives on Exmoor with her husband and a huge ginger cat. As well as writing, she works as a harpist.