About Essi..

I am the author of Tilly Greenway and the Secrets of the Ancient Keys, an epic fantasy-saga that follows the adventures of twelve year old Tilly and her stepbrother Zack who learn that the world is run by a sinister secret society and that the fate of mankind rests on finding a set of mysterious keys that were hidden thousand of years ago by an Egyptian Princess.

Watchers is proving to be a huge success, which is wonderful. I’ve been doing a tour of Waterstone’s bookstores, and will continue with these during the autumn and winter of 2012. If you’d like to meet me, do come along. I’m also happy to visit your school (if you are still at one!) to chat about writing, or about some of the themes in the Tilly series.

Essi Tolling at Waterstones

I’m happiest when I’m outside, roaming the fields or listening to the comings and goings of the birds and animals who live in the woods that back onto my house. I’ve always loved the great outdoors. Here I am under one of my favourite Beech trees.

Essi in the woods

I think you’ll enjoy the Tilly series if you like sacred sites, myths and legends, alternative history, epic quests, conspiracy thrillers, ancient aliens, druid lore, grail quests, solving riddles etc (yes, all those elements are in it!). It is suitable for children of 12-plus, but is loved just as much by adults too.

Essi Tolling with one of the sarsens of the Avebury Rings

One of the slight differences to a regular fantasy-series is that although the Tilly books include mythical beasts and magical characters, the landscape in which they take place is real. Book One, for instance, takes place in Wales and England and visits sites such as Skenfrith Castle, King Arthur’s Stone, Winchester Hill, Avebury, Stonehenge, Silbury Hill, the Chalice Well Gardens and Glastonbury.

Some of the most wonderful letters I’ve received are from readers who had visited one or all of these places after reading Watchers. I love to hear their experiences, because for me real magic happens all around us every day, it’s just a case of keeping our eyes open for it…of reaching out to touch and enjoy it and I had always hoped the books might help readers to do just that!

I’m currently putting the finishing touches to Book Two which is called The Hidden Hand and which will take us further afield…

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