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Fenland back-drop for new book by Wisbech-based author Graham Sheppard

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Wisbech-based writer Graham Sheppard hopes his first novel has the potential to be a best seller and attract local readers too.

'Potential' is first novel of Wisbech-based author Graham Sheppard. (8623369)
'Potential' is first novel of Wisbech-based author Graham Sheppard. (8623369)

The book is due to be published in the next month or two and Graham explains the novel entitled 'Potential' is set in Wisbech and has a sporting background.

Graham, who is 74, has taken over 20 years to finish the book, which he started while working for an insurance company in Surrey.

He said: "My story has changed many time sover the years, as did the background, from Richmond Park in Surrey initially to the Fens. My main characters however have remained unchange and I have come to know and love them as if family."

The novel tells the story of thirty-year-old single dad, David Lucas who has taken up running as a therapeutic release from watching his wife die of cancer.

Eighteen months after her death, on a day the Fens face the worst fog they have experienced for many years, David, accompanied by his dog, sets out to face the bleak conditions, unaware that his life is to change in a way he could never have imagined. Attacked by a feral gypsy dog, in the melee that follows, David falls in the icy river and faces certain death.

Only the bravery of passing stranger and ex-Olympic athlete and coach, Charlie Greaves, saves his life.

A strong relationship soon develops between the two men when Charlie realises he has a talented athlete on his hands. With the Olympic Games in London the following year, they set their sights on a place in the Olympic team.

Graham added: "Athletics has always been one of my interests. I ran the London Marathon four times in my forties. In my more competitive years rowing was my main sport (living only a few yards from the River Thames in Barnes, London.)

"I reached the semi-finals at Henley in 1970. Since coming to Wisbech 19 years ago I have played table tennis in the Wisbech and King's Lynn Leagues, holding the chairman position at Wisbech a few years ago."

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