Ruthie’s ‘magical’ debut is inspired by the Forest

By Jake Chown  
Thursday 12th May 2022 9:06 am
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Ruthie Dean
Former school teacher Ruth Dyer wrote her debut children’s story ‘The Last Fidget’ during lockdown (Tindle )

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A FORMER teacher who spent the pandemic penning a tale about magical imps from a Forest-inspired “hidden world” is excited to release her first ever children’s book this month.

Ruth Dyer, who lives in Viney Hill, wrote her first children’s fantasy story, ‘The Last Fidget’, during lockdown, and is gearing up to share her tale of magic and adventure with readers in May.

The author, who has written the book under the pseudonym ‘Ruthie Dean’, says her debut story is inspired by her childhood in the Forest, with its woodland setting a place “where anyone of any age can immerse themselves into another world; a magical, adventure filled, secretive kind of world.”

The story, which bears the tag line ‘a desperate plea from a hidden world’, tells the story of Ash, a “solitary” woodland imp, and Tilly, a young girl who gets drawn into a magical woodland.

The pair set out on an adventure-filled journey during which they encounter fairies, frightening beasts and more in a bid to reunite Ash with his estranged family.

The cover art for ‘The Last Fidget’, which is available from all major booksellers from May 19 ()

Ruth says that locals are sure to recognise one “beast” in particular - her interpretation of the Forest’s own wild boar.

She added: “The story also fosters awareness of issues relating to climate change, increasingly relevant to all generations of today.”

Ruth says the book is aimed at eight to 12 year-olds, though “it might be of interest to children younger or older.”

The author is quite familiar with her target audience having spent many years as a primary school teacher in the Forest and South Gloucestershire, while she also used to teach Childcare and Education at the Royal Forest of Dean College in Five Acres.

The book has been published by Grosvenor House Publishing in Surrey and is illustrated by Ruth’s friend, the “incredible” Roselyn Brooks.

Ruth says she hopes the book can inspire others to embrace their creativity, even - and perhaps especially - in the most difficult of times.

In her acknowledgments at the start of the book, she writes: “For anyone with the will - just imagine and achieve; even a pandemic can’t stop creativity.

“Sometimes, just sometimes, we need fantasy, not to escape but to survive in reality.”

The book is available online from all major sellers, including Amazon and Waterstones, from May 19, and is available to pre-order now.

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