A member of staff from Specsavers in Cirencester is celebrating following the publication of his first book, Black Cross.

Jonathan Ashman, lab manager at the store wrote the fantasy novel over a period of six years before self publishing as a Kindle version in January 2015. The book has now been released in paperback and has also been illustrated by Jonathan’s colleague, lab technician Charles Richardson.

‘It was quite a long process to finish the book so it’s great to finally see it in print,’ said Jonathan. ‘I’m originally from Lancashire but moved down this way two and a half years ago and I think that’s what prompted me to finish it. It’s received some positive reviews so far and I’m pleased that people like it.

‘It’s obviously very different to what I do day-to-day in the lab at work and it’s nice to have something as a little bit of escapism. To have done it with Charles is fantastic too – we hit it off as soon as we started working together and realised we had similar interests. His illustrations really help bring the book to life.’

Jonathan has also written some short stories which are available now and he is currently working on the second book, Black Guild which he hopes will be out at the end of the year.

All Cirencester store information