Books and stories have always held a special place in my heart. One of my earliest memories is a birthday present from my grandfather. An illustrated copy of Hans Christian Anderson’s fairy tales. I couldn’t read, I could hardly balance the book on my lap, but it opened a world beyond my drab existence in post war London. A world of fantasy and dreams, a world I’ve escaped to many times over the years. The stories I write always have a basis in fact. They spring from a titbit overheard, a person I met, a place I visited or they fill an unrecorded gap in history. They tell of secrets and memories, of mysteries and passions. Come, step into my world—you are most welcome.
AVAILABLE FOR PREORDER NOW RELEASE DATE: NOVEMBER 2023 THE TALENTED MRS GREENWAY
From a bestselling Australian author, this compellingly realised novel brings to life the story of an enigmatic figure, wife to feted colonial architect Francis Greenway, and asks, whose hand really shaped Sydney? Who is the talented Mrs Greenway?.
1814 Sydney Town
When Mary Greenway, freshly arrived from the old country, steps into the maelstrom of Sydney Town with three children at her skirts, she has high hopes of a new beginning, despite having little money and a husband in irons. After all, the sudden death of her sadistic first husband has meant freedom from her gilded cage and Francis Greenway is an architect of some promise, recommended by none other than Admiral Phillip himself. Mary is a woman of great resources and an even greater creative passion, a passion that will surely burn through anything that the filthy, burgeoning, vitality of colonial Sydney can throw at her. Soon ensconced in a tiny cottage in George Street, Mary sets about moulding a life for her family from the unpromising clay of Sydney Town, with a determination fired in equal parts by guilt for her disastrous past action and a desire to realise her true calling. When she is befriended by Elizabeth Macquarie it seems that fate is smiling on them and the promise of a better life is within her grasp. But fate is a difficult mistress and she has past secrets to keep, current betrayals on the brink of discovery and the stakes are higher than ever. With Mary's grip on this new life slipping, will the past come back to haunt her?
'An infectious fascination with the past.' Sydney Morning Herald 'Cooper’s confident prose and deep empathy for her characters will keep readers hooked as she unspools her intrigue-filled mystery.' US Publisher's Weekly Her writing is transcendent and she brings the times, characters, locations and world to life in such a visceral way.' @littlebutfiercebookdiary ‘The narrative skill to weave multiple timelines into a satisfying whole…smartly edited, cleanly written…easy to devour.’ Sydney Morning Herald ‘Cooper is a welcome inclusion to the rising ranks of female-centred historical Australian novels.’ The Herald Sun