My Inspiration – Werribee Mansion and Park

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When I first visited Werribee Mansion in Victoria, Australia, I feel in love with it. Its glorious Italianate architectural style and its 60 stately rooms, not to mention the beautifully landscaped grounds, inspired me.

Some years later, when I started jotting down notes for the novel that became The Dragon Sleeps, there was no doubt that Werribee Mansion would become my Thornton Park. Of course, there are many differences but my inspiration came from this grand mansion.

Here you see the house and the main hall with its grand staircase.

If you find yourself near Melbourne, its definitely worth the 30 minute drive to Werribee Park.

 

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THE DRAGON SLEEPS – GOODREADS GIVEAWAY

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I’m very happy to offer five copies of The Dragon Sleeps for this Giveaway.

Enter for a chance to win one of 5 signed paperback copies of

The Dragon Sleeps by Ellen Read.

A Ming dragon statue. An ancient sword. What treasure is worth killing for?

Set in 1920s Australia, this is a story of murder, mystery, love and secrets.

At a weekend house party at Thornton Park, Alexandra Thornton wants to break the news to her father that she’s decided to be an antiques dealer, like him, her grandfather and great-grandfather before her.

Amongst the guests are Zhang Huo, the Chinese antiques dealer who, with his son, has brought a Ming dragon statue from China for Thomas Thornton. Benedict Archer, who is manager of Thornton Antiques in Melbourne and who has been secretly helping Alexandra learn more about her family business, is also invited. Alexandra asks Benedict and Edith Blackburn, her friend since childhood, to be with her when she approaches her father. When Edith claims that Benedict is in love with her, Alexandra can’t believe it. In all the time they’d been at Thornton Antiques together, he’d never said a word. Now, Alexandra looks at him differently. Can it be true?

Then a body is found and, before the weekend is over, a priceless artefact is stolen.

Alexandra is determined to discover how these things are connected to the Ming dragon and the antiques her great-grandfather brought from Hong Kong so many years ago.

As she peels away the layers of an eighty-year-old mystery, she discovers her life is in danger.

The Dragon Sleeps Released

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The day has finally arrived. My book is released.

It’s available on Amazon as paperback and eBook. Apple iBooks, Kobo and other eBook retailers have the eBook. Paperback will be there soon. The paperback will also be in Australian bookshops soon.

 

 

The Dragon Sleeps – My new novel

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Published on Friday 4th November 2016

in Paperback and eBook.

I hope you’ll enjoy it.

A Dragon statue. An ancient sword.

What treasure is worth killing for?

It’s 1927 in Victoria, Australia. A hedonistic time after the Great War when young people knew they could enjoy life without the threat of war hanging over them. A time when women have more options opened to them.

There is a weekend house party at Thornton Park and Alexandra Thornton thinks it will be a good time to break the news to her father that she wants to be an antiques dealer, like him, her grandfather and great-grandfather before her.

Only a small number of people are invited. Amongst the guests are Zhang Huo, the Chinese antiques dealer who, with his son, has brought a Ming dragon statue from China for Thomas Thornton.

Benedict Archer, who is manager of Thornton Antiques in Melbourne and who has been secretly helping Alexandra learn more about her family business, is also invited. Alexandra asks Benedict and Edith Blackburn, her friend since childhood, to be with her when she approaches her father.

When Edith claims that Benedict is in love with her, Alexandra can’t believe it. In all the time they’d been at Thornton Antiques together, he’d never said a word. Now, Alexandra looks at him differently. Can it be true?

Then a body found in the orchard and, before the weekend is over, a priceless artefact is stolen.

Alexandra is determined to discover how these things are connected to the Ming dragon and the antiques her great-grandfather brought with him from Hong Kong so many years ago.

What secret has remained hidden at Thornton Park for the last eight years?