icon caret-left icon caret-right instagram pinterest linkedin facebook twitter goodreads question-circle facebook circle twitter circle linkedin circle instagram circle goodreads circle pinterest circle


Elle Thornton is an award-winning fiction writer who grew up on military bases in the South and West. Her background as the daughter of a career marine and her professional experience as a newspaper reporter helped her write two books: her debut mystery Touch the Dead (under the name E.S. Thornton), and The Girl Who Swam to Atlantis, YA historical fiction, her first novel. 


Touch the Dead received a Silver Medal from the Military Writers Society of America and an Honorable Mention from Readers' Favorite international competition.


The Florida Writers Association recognized Touch the Dead with a Royal Palm Gold Literary Award for an unpublished mystery. In addition, Touch the Dead was named the Florida organization's 2nd Runner-Up Book of the Year (2019). The book was published in June of 2021.


The Girl Who Swam to Atlantis was named the Indie Author Project's YA Florida winner in 2021, one of fourteen regional contests. The Military Writers Society of America awarded The Girl Who Swam to Atlantis a Bronze Medal, while the Florida Writers Association gave it a First Place Royal Palm Literary Award for historical fiction.


Touch the Dead is both a love story and a murder mystery. It unfolds in the steamy North Florida summer of 2016 when Eden Sinclair returns to the Fox Dunes Lodge to search for her missing cousin Jess. But finding answers and someone to trust prove as elusive as the shadows beneath the waves.


The Girl Who Swam to Atlantis is a coming-of-age story about twelve-year-old Gabriella, who lives on a North Carolina military base in the segregated South of 1957. It is the story of a young girl's growing awareness of the world and her place in it, a world where there is savage danger and immeasurable love.


Elle Thornton is a former reporter for newspapers in Massachusetts, Hawaii and Kansas. She was a television reporter in Hong Kong. Her poetry has been published in The Connecticut River Review and The Concho River Review.