A FATHER and son combo from Ayr have made their first steps into the book market by publishing two tales.

Writer Iain Hood, who grew up in Ayr and attended St John’s Primary and Queen Margaret Academy in the town, has had his debut novel, This Good Book, published.

This Good Book meditates on many heavy themes: religion, art, love, the price that eventually always has to be paid, but it is also a light, fast-paced, fleet-footed comedy, much in the vein of Muriel Spark, whose books Iain greatly admires.

Iain told how his Ayrshire upbringing influenced the tale through character Susan Alison.

He said: “[She’s] very much a character defined by her move from the country, in her case the Western Isles, to Glasgow, and in the same way I was defined by my move from Ayr to Glasgow to study at Glasgow University and Jordanhill then teaching in Glasgow.

“The darkness of the humour in the book also has an Ayrshire feel, where mordant stoicism is a part of every storyteller – and Ayrshire people are all storytellers.”

The book has garnered a number of five star reviews from book bloggers, and The Herald said that This Good Book has ‘a dark, compelling urgency.’

Ayr Advertiser: Daredevil Dave spent his 91st birthday at Biggin Hill airport, where he flew in a Spitfire.Daredevil Dave spent his 91st birthday at Biggin Hill airport, where he flew in a Spitfire.

Meanwhile, Iain’s father, David Hood, also recently wrote a memoir, My Life in Four Chapters, which Iain and his nephew Neil Simpson helped to bring into book form. David, 91, known in the family as ‘Papa’, was delighted to tell his family about his very full life, as a student also at Glasgow School of Art, his National Service in the RAF and his long career working for Liverpool Victoria insurance company, latterly as the manager of the LV office in Ayr.

Iain said of his father’s work: “Papa started thinking about his book in the run up to his 90th birthday. He has always enjoyed telling his story to his large family."

Ayr Advertiser: Dave's memoir

He added: "Papa opened up a treasure trove of memories and selection of photographs from his sizeable archive, many familiar to the family and some not seen since they were initially printed.

"The cover photograph shows Papa as a boy with Papa's own father taken near the Low Green in Ayr: they did not live in Ayr and were visiting, but it seems prophetic in the way Papa's life turned out."