Book: The Tea Planter’s Wife

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I am indebted to Andrew Taylor at Ceylon Tea Trails, Sri Lanka, for his fantastic tour of the Norwood Tea Factory where I learnt so much about tea, and also about the old days in Ceylon. Without the staff at Tea Trails who gave us such a wonderful taste of how colonial life might once have been, the book would have been less authentic. We stayed at beautiful Castlereagh situated beside a lake in tea country, where I had my nose stuck in one of the history books from their extensive library almost every day. Thanks particularly to our ‘butlers’, and to Nadeera Weerasinghe for explaining the plants, trees and birds of the beautiful Tea Trails gardens to me. Thanks also to our driver/guide Sudarshan Jayasinghe and Mark Forbes in Colombo for his City Walk, and to the staff of the Galle Face Hotel where we stayed when in Colombo. The whole trip was beautifully planned by Nick Clark at Experience Travel.

I am grateful for the wealth of information that can be found on the Internet, especially YouTube for visual detail about Sri Lanka past and present. One particular memoir was very helpful, Round the Tea Totum: When Sri Lanka was Ceylon by David Ebbels (AuthorHouse 2006), which gave me fascinating insights into domestic life on a plantation, especially the bedtime customs and cleaning rituals.

Finally my warmest thanks go to my tireless agents, Caroline Hardman & Joanna Swainson, and to my editor Venetia Butterfield, as well as the entire team at Penguin who work so hard to bring a book to publication. Thank you all.

Books that I found particularly useful while researching the novel include:

      Dictionary of Sri Lankan English by Michael Meyler,

      19th Century Newspaper Engravings by R. K. de Silva, Serendib Publications, London 1998

      Vintage Posters of Ceylon by Anura Saparamadu, W. L. H. Skeen & Company 2011

      Ceylon Under the British by G. C. Mendis, Asian Educational Services Third Edition 1951

      Sri Lankan Wildlife by Gehan de Silva Wijeyeratne, Bradt Travel Guides Ltd, UK 2007

      Sri Lanka in Pictures by Sara E. Hoffmann, TFCB 2006

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