If you want to make an impact as an author then thinking big is a good start – and Victor Paul Bennett has certainly done that with his debut offering Yuletide Blessing.

He said: “I am a resident of Alton and I have just had my first book published. It is a fictional romantic drama which captures a brief episode in the life of a young woman and her seven-year-old child. 

“Having spent six and a half years travelling across the USA and living on the streets as fugitives from the law, they end up in Seattle just before the Christmas of 2012.

“The evolving story covers about ten months in the characters’ lives, but took me about two years to write.

“When I finally reached the end I had notched up more than 928,000 words – almost 60 per cent more than War and Peace, and similarly with The Lord of the Rings trilogy and The Hobbit combined.

“The book has been split into a tetralogy, and it is the first part of this that has been published under the pseudonym of Samantha Kennedy.

“The cover illustrations in ink wash were produced by the very talented local artist Kate Davis.”