Mum inspired to publish debut children's book for special reason

charmaine anstey

Charmaine Anstey has published her first children's book. - Credit: Charmaine Anstey

A mum from Lowestoft has published her debut children's book based on the relationship between her son who has autism and the family's late pet dog.

Charmaine Anstey, 37, lives in the town with her son Jacob, nine, and older son Daniel, 19.

The book is called My Dog Called Banjo and explores the story of a furry little puppy looking for love and a family and a little boy looking for a best friend.


Miss Anstey was inspired to publish the book based on the relationship between her son Jacob and the family dog. - Credit: Charmaine Anstey

It has even gone so far as being sold in Japan.

The book is based on Miss Anstey's son's Jacob's relationship with their late pet dog Max who died recently.

Miss Anstey said: "We lost Max this year and it all happened while I was writing the book.


Miss Anstey always wanted to write her own book. - Credit: Charmaine Anstey

"I've always wanted to have my own book published and it contains a sentimental message which is important for our family but also important for other children who have formed special bonds with their pets."

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Miss Anstey often reads bedtime stories to her nine-year-old son and was inspired to write the book to inspire his imagination.

"My son has such a wild imagination and we often get creative with our story telling," she said.

"It means a lot to my son that he is the inspiration behind this book being published.

"He is the one that always encourages me to write.

"I've always wanted to be a writer and while it is a difficult process having to pay to get your own book out there it is so rewarding as well."

Miss Anstey confirmed that she has only been inspired to continue her writing process.

dog dead

The family dog passed away this year. - Credit: Charmaine Anstey

She said: "For now I am going to continue specialising in children's fiction.

"My plan once Jacob is slightly older is to then write books such as thrillers and romance because these are topics I've always been interested in as well.

"So many people I know have bought my book as well and it feels so good to see it out there on the bookshelves."

My Dog Called Banjo can be bought from Amazon, Kindle, Pegasus, Waterstones and eBay.