Ramsgate author Peter Erlam publishes new children’s book

Peter and his new book Caress It Like Messi

Retired journalist Peter Erlam will be signing copies of his latest children’s book at an event in Ramsgate  next week.

The dad-of-two, who moved to Ramsgate some five years ago, has published Caress It Like Messi, which has a distinct Christmas theme.

Peter’s two previous novels for junior-age readers featured a Ramsgate-based raven called Ravi while this new tale is based on his curly-haired, football-loving grandson.

It starts on the morning of the 2023 Women’s World Cup final, with England missing a clear-cut chance when a header is badly misdirected.

Freya, 13, a talented footballer herself, shouts at the TV screen in frustration. But her brother Rye, 8, sympathises: “It happens to me all the time. The ball hits my head and shoots off in any random direction.”

Rye’s corkscrew curls are the problem. They have a crazy, trampoline-like effect on the ball; he has no control over where it lands.

Rye’s an easy-going kid but when his football pals start calling him names, he slumps.

The narrative takes the reader on Rye’s path to self-discovery and self-esteem, via Lapland and a meeting with a very famous reindeer who himself had struggles with a standout facial feature which, in the end, proved to be the making of him.

With its positive message about dealing with adversity, it’s a story that will cheer up any child who has faced challenges. It ends with a heart-warming family reunion on Christmas Day.

The author is signing copies of Caress It Like Messi at a children’s book fair on December 19 & 20 at the Baker Street Bistro in Petticoat Lane Emporium.

It can also be bought by contacting him on [email protected]