Marie-Elsa Bragg Celebrates New Novel With Two Events in Cumbria

Fresh from Words by the Water, Marie-Elsa Bragg will be returning to the region for two special events to mark the release of her new book, set inPreview Changes Cumbria over four generations of a hill farming.

Bookends are delighted to host Marie-Elsa Bragg for a book signing in Keswick and an author afternoon tea in Carlisle. Marie-Elsa Bragg will be signing copies of her debut novel ‘Towards Mellbreak’ in Keswick at a free event on 8 April and will be discussing her novel, life and writing  over afternoon tea in Cakes and Ale cafe in Carlisle on 13  May.

Marie-Elsa Bragg is the daughter of renowned broadcaster and author Melvyn Bragg and painter and novelist Lise Roche. Marie-Elsa is a writer, lecturer, ordained Anglican priest and Duty Chaplain of Westminster Abbey. She has previously been a professional ballet dancer and a Jesuit Spiritual Director.

She considers herself part French and part Cumbrian and spends a considerable amount of time in Cumbria – the setting which her debut novel ‘Towards Mellbreak’ profoundly evokes.


Praised in early readership by key figures such as Tim Pears and Ian McMillan, ‘Towards Mellbreak’ is a poetic and beautiful novel; at its heart it is a hymn to the landscape of Northern England and to a disappearing world. Marie-Elsa Bragg embraces the old and beloved English tradition of writing about the land, reminiscent of Dorothy Wordsworth and Ted Hughes, and encapsulates the Northern landscape, and those who tend to it.

Set in Cumbria between Spring 1971 and Spring 1994, ‘Towards Mellbreak’ covers four generations of a Herdwick hill farming family. It examines religion, folklore and tradition at a time when farming life went through further industrialization and subsidy led changes. It also sensitively examines the consequences of government enforced rules on the farming community.

Free book signing, 3pm, Sat 8 April at Bookends Keswick.

Author Afternoon Tea, 4pm, Sat 13 May at Cakes and Ale Cafe, Carlisle. Tickets: £12 (includes afternoon tea) available from Bookends 01228 529067 and

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