Edinburgh teacher pens children's book while stranded and out-of-work in Peru during Covid
An Edinburgh teacher stranded and out-of-work in Peru has spent the pandemic penning a children’s book about friendship and kindness – to rave reviews.
Let us know what you think and join the conversation at the bottom of this article.
Eric Wood moved to South America before the coronavirus outbreak to teach English, but soon found himself out of work when the pandemic hit.
Struggling to support himself without teaching opportunities, the 30-year-old discovered he enjoyed writing and turned his hand to crafting beautiful children’s stories.
Mr Wood’s first book, Sally the Snake, is aimed at children aged-five and above, and is now available to order on Amazon, where it has yielded five-star reviews from dozens of happy customers.
The 24-page story follows Sally, a very hungry green snake, on her adventure to find food and makes friends along the way.
Illustrated by Nico Dean, the colourful story is the first in a series of animal books Mr Wood is working on from his new home in the Andes Mountain range of Peru.
“Things haven't worked out quite as I planned,” he said. “Throughout my life so far I have battled many personal difficulties due to poor health and more recently difficulties with my mental health.
“I have a passion for poetry, dogs, and more recently I have discovered a passion for writing short children's stories.
“With support from friends I have met during my travels, my children's book characters have come alive on paper.”
Mr Wood has taken inspiration from the stunning Peru landscape, writing about the animals he meets along the way.
He said: “I like to go on adventures though the mountains to see the Alpacas and llamas, whilst enjoying the beautiful views this magical place has to offer.”
Each book contains interactive colouring pages, alongside heartfelt stories brought to live with bright illustrations.
The educator hopes that his books will help people spend more time reading with their loved ones.
He said: “My hope is for parents, carers, families and friends to spend time together reading with the people they love the most.”
The book became available to buy on Monday, June 21, and has already received rave reviews from 62 customers.
One reviewer from the UK said: “My boy absolutely loves his Sally the snake book, as do I. This is a brilliant little read that keeps the kids interested from start to finish and then a colouring page just to finish it off.
"One of those books that you don't mind reading over and over to your children as it's got a proper story to it. Hat off to the author, job very well done.”
Parents of children with additional needs have also praised the book for its ability to hold young reader's attention, and its well-crafted theme of friendship and fun.
One reviewer wrote: “My little boy who has autism and ADHD loved this book, it’s hard to keep his attention but he loves rhyming and animals so this was perfect for him and has great themes of friendship. Hope to see more animal series from this author.”
Mr Wood’s second book about a misunderstood monster on the search for friendship is out in August.