A Stroud author has published his debut children's book, There's No Deer Around Here.

Andy Hussey's story is inspired by the events of lockdown. It focuses on Jacob, a young boy who stays regularly with his Granny. He can't work out what has entered Granny's garden one night and what had eaten all of their vegetable plants but with an inkling it could be deer, he sets off to collect clues.

A graphic designer by trade, Andy was born and raised in Stroud but now lives in Stockbridge, Hampshire. When the country entered lockdown, he took up daily walks and noticed large numbers of deer.

"Deer spotting became part of my daily lockdown walks with my dog," he said.

"With Covid forcing us to stay local and rediscover our own local landscapes, it was invigorating to get out in the fresh air and appreciate what was on my back doorstep.

"From chatting to friends and family, it was clear that children were also being impacted by Covid, especially their mental health and well-being so I wanted to create a book to encourage kids to get outside, particularly at a time when we all needed to appreciate the positive impacts nature has on our mental health.

"With the help of our mindfulness consultant, Ruth Davey, I wanted to encourage everyone to look again at our surroundings!"

Ruth helped create a timeless activity list at the back of the book of suggested activities we can all do and appreciate as a family, both young and old.

Andy also collaborated on the book with Bristol-based illustrator Rosie Venner.

"This story celebrates the wholesome relationship of a grandchild and their grandparent and shows the reader that there can be beauty found in everything - even in the darkest, strangest times of our lives.

"I hope that this book inspires children everywhere to explore their surroundings and know that their imaginations should have no boundaries," she said.

The book, which has been endorsed by The British Deer Society, is the first from independent publisher, Muddy Little Boots.

It is available for £6.99 from muddylittleboots.com/shop. An audio version, which includes sound effects and prompts to turn pages is available via a QR code printed on the inside cover.

Andy is already working on a sequel, Are There Any Trout About?, and hopes to publish this next year.