“A dream come true” is how Galashiels author Lesley Anderson described the launch of her debut novel “Not Forgotten”.
But the former nurse is not resting on her laurels and is already researching for a sequel to her book, which was warmly received at the well-attended launch in Tweedbank and has attracted rave reviews on Amazon, the online retailer.
Lesley, who runs Limelight Chidcare in Galashiels, used many of her experiences growing up in the town as an inspiration for the characters in her moving story.
She said: “It is quite surreal actually sitting holding my published book. I have been writing for more than 20 years. It can be as lonely occupation at times, but it is really exciting that it has come to this and I am now working on a second book already.”
Mother-of-two Lesley, 50, who was educated at St Margaret’s RC Primary and Galashiels Academy, studied English Literature with the Open University and has had short plays performed at the Traverse Theatre in Edinburgh.
But the launch of the 300-page “Not Forgotten” is her biggest writing break to date.
The story centres on 17-year-old Anna Munro who has just revealed to her dad that she has out of body experiences and can see ghosts. Her dad, Mick, a single parent, is struggling to come to terms with his daughter’s revelations, when Ruth – his first love of 20 years ago – arrives back in town to find him.
Anna’s papa, Henryk, is determined to help Anna understand the intriguing paranormal qualities she has inherited from her Polish great grandmother, Rosalia, and he takes Anna back to Poland to the exact spot where Rosalia was shot dead by the Nazis.
A spokesman for publishers Pegasus said: “Not Forgotten delves into the complex emotional relationship between love and loss and how these quite disparate but always interlinked emotions are continually forging and moulding our personality, from the moment we are born to the day we die.”
“Not Forgotten” is available in paperback for £8.99.