Born in Oxford, England, the unstoppable Sara Alexi has travelled widely and now splits her time between her home in England and a tiny rural village in the Peloponnese, in Greece.
Sara began writing later in life after battling dyslexia throughout her school years. She qualified as a psychotherapist and ran her own practice for years, but confined her artistic nature to painting.
It wasn’t until she discovered that Agatha Christie, Jules Verne and Hans Christian Andersen were all dyslexic, that Sara’s literary perspective changed. The world of fiction opened to her and she has been a prolific writer ever since.
Her debut novel, The Illegal Gardener was published in 2012 and was inspired by a meeting with an illegal immigrant in a Greek farming village. The book weaves an entrancing story of the burgeoning relationship that develops between two people from very different backgrounds and cultures, an English woman living in Greece and the Pakistani illegal immigrant who becomes her gardener and house boy.
The success of Sara’s first novel spawned the Greek Village Series, (so far totalling nine books) which has proved to be hugely popular and provides a keenly observed, compassionate insight into the Greek people and culture, and the human condition in general.
Not content to lie on her laurels, Sara has also developed an audio download for The Illegal Gardener and is in exciting talks with producers to bring the series to life on screen.
You can follow Sara on various social networking sites including:
THE ILLEGAL GARDENER
Driven by a need for some control in her life, Juliet sells up on impulse and buys a dilapidated farmhouse in a tiny Greek village, leaving her English life behind. The house is livable by local standards, but the job of restoring the garden is too big. It requires strength. Juliet cannot bring it to life on her own. Around the olive tree, hidden beneath the covering of bindweeds, are mattresses, broken chairs, shepherds’ crooks, and old goat bells, the remains of past lives intertwined in a slow decay. The beauty of the garden is lost with the years of neglect and no one to appreciate it. Juliet reluctantly enlists casual labour. She has no desire to share her world with anyone. The boys have grown, Mick has gone. This is her time now. Aaman has travelled to Greece from Pakistan illegally. His task is to find work and raise money for the harvester his village desperately needs to deliver them out of poverty. Poverty that is sending the younger generation to the cities, dividing families, and slowly destroying his community. What he imagined would be a heroic journey in reality is fraught with danger and corruption. He finds himself in Greece and follows the work, a little here, a little there. As time passes, he loses his sense of self. He is now an immigrant worker, illegal, displaced, unwanted, with no value. Some days he does not have enough money to feed himself, let alone to return home to Pakistan. In the village square, he waits for work, dawn not even broken. Juliet hires Aaman. Neither is entirely comfortable with their role. Juliet the Westerner, who has money and a valid passport, resents the intrusion even though she wants her garden cleared. Aaman needs the work and money but resents the humiliation.
As the summer progresses, even though they are from vastly different backgrounds, cultures apart, they discover they have something in common, an event that has defined how they interact and even how they view themselves. Pieces of their lives they have kept hidden even from themselves are exposed.
They are each other’s catalysts to facing their own ghosts…
Marina is a gentle soul who makes a modest living in her corner shop. Her husband died years ago, and her children have grown up. Life is pleasantly predictable, if a little dull.
But not even her daughters know that thirty five years ago Marina spent lonely months on a nearby island, and the events of that summer have haunted her ever since.
Now Marina’s daughter is planning to move to the same island and the past and present threaten to collide with dreadful consequences.
Black Butterflies follows Marina reluctantly revisiting the island. She has a plan, of sorts, to avert possible tragedy but in doing so she will come face to face with the consequences of her long kept secret. Will she be in time, and why does she never go anywhere without her big black bag?
Packed with a troupe of colourful characters that intertwine in a gripping story, Black Butterflies is by turn uproariously funny, touching or sad.
Exploring themes of bigotry and how doing what we think is for the best can unwittingly harm those we love, this is a gentle journey to one woman’s redemption.
THE EXPLOSIVE NATURE OF FRIENDSHIP
Mitsos has spent the last twenty years trying to comes to terms with the events of a single day and all that led up tp it. In his twilight years a suprising turn of events gives him a chance to rectify his biggest wrong and give himself the peace he is seeking.
But is what he has wanted for the last twenty years what he still wants now and is he the man he thought he was?
Set against a backdrop of a small Greek farming village, comedy and tragedy are present in equal measures. Sara transports you to a land of sea and sun as she explores what it means to be human, and fallible. The book examines the nature of friendship, and how our choices and our perceptions of our place in society can define us.
THE GYPSY’S DREAM
Cross at Dad, Abby, 17, boards a flight to Greece, but gets hopelessly lost and ends up in the wrong village. Alone, with very little money, no Greek and no way to contact her friend Jackie, who has lined up a bar job for her, Abby realises she has to stand on her own two feet for the first time…
She meets Stella, who runs the local ouzeri – a rough and ready eatery were farmers gather to drink and take refuge from their domestic lives. Stella does not need a naive young English girl hanging around, and the ouzeri is not the glamorous bar that Abby had bargained for.
But when events throw them together, the situation brings to the boil tensions that have been brewing for years, the ripples drawing in other people in the village, threatening Abby’s ability to ever leave, culminating in shocking unforeseen events and the uncovering of dark secrets that change peoples’ thinking about themselves and others permanently.
THE ART OF BECOMING HOMELESS
Michelle has always had a positive attitude to work and responsibility and has made all the ‘right’ choices.
Why then does she feel she might have ended up in the wrong place?
Disenchanted with life as a high-flying lawyer in London, when her firm decides to send her to Athens to handle a case she jumps at the opportunity.
Before work begins on Monday Michelle decides to squeeze in a sun-filled weekend on an island but a chance encounter on the boat across and a tragic accident throw her plans into disarray and threaten to change the entire course of her life…
IN THE SHADE OF THE MONKEY PUZZLE TREE
Mid-life brings problems.
For Theo it makes him wonder if there is more to the world than the small village where he has lived all his life and, if there is, how far he needs to go to find it.
The path he takes results in an unexpected journey that challenges his perception of everything he knew to be true.
A HANDFUL OF PEBBLES
A Handful of Pebbles follows Sarah who travels to the village in Greece for the wedding of her youngest son.
But Sarah’s own marriage is strained, and now that her children have grown up and left home she finds herself questioning her role of wife and mother.
Meeting up with her best friend Michelle, who is also over for the wedding, and whom she has not seen for years adds a further dimension, and why does Sarah feel so unsettled in the presence of Nicolaos, the shepherd who she seems to keep bumping into ..?
THE UNQUIET MIND
Yanni has lived all his life in semi isolation, on the ridge at the top of the island, with only his parents and their herd of goats for company.
But when the family’s donkey dies, the burden rests on him to make the journey over to the mainland to buy a new one…
Reluctantly, and fearing he will not be able to cope with the wider world, Yanni resolves to make the trip, and in doing so to face his own demons.
One hope spurs him on, and that is the chance of being reunited with Sophia, his childhood sweetheart who was sent away to the mainland at an early age, and whom he has not seen or heard from since.
Will Yanni be able to find Sophia, and will she even remember him?
WATCHING THE WIND BLOW
This story is based on true events that happened to a family member of Sara Alexi in the year 2000.
Set in the Aegean sea, under the Mediterranean sun, Watching the Wind Blow is a tale of a girl and a man who are thrown together unwillingly in circumstances that are soon beyond anyone’s control. The endless blue sky and calm clear waters are no more than a tease for Irini, as it soon becomes clear that her life is at risk. Stumbling to keep herself safe she finds herself revisiting a time in her life that has left her scarred and scared. She has no idea how huge the cost, or the amount of love she needs to heal these wounds.