‘Come Home, Harry String’ is the third and eagerly anticipated novel by acclaimed local writer, Nick Cann.

Cann’s first novel, ‘Jake’s Eulogy’ was the number one best seller in the Belfast Telegraph paperback listings, and his second book, ‘On The Island’, followed hot on its heels and also generated considerable praise from critics and readers alike.

Famously quirky, Cann who was once nominated for the title of Northern Ireland’s Best Dressed Man, also featured in one of the more memorable episodes of ‘Come Dine with Me’, shot in Belfast.

He says, “Over the years I have turned down more magazines and newspaper jobs than was probably sensible … everything from the top design job at Hello Magazine to redesigning the national newspaper of Poland and quite a bit in between. I usually believe in taking chances when they come along. I’m quite impetuous. It’s led me to try everything from playing football with Rudolf Nureyev to moving from a cushy life in London to Northern Ireland in the midst of the Troubles. But then that was an easy step, Northern Ireland’s my spiritual home.”

No surprise then, that Cann’s books are firmly rooted here. His latest novel, set in Cann’s home town of Holywood, deals with central character, Harry String’s struggle to regain his memory after being critically injured in a car crash and then later, his relationship with his married, marriage guidance counsellor, Susan Heywood. The relationship soon leads to violence however, when String is confronted by Susan’s jealous husband.

Nick Cann says it’s very plot driven. “The book’s pacey, with lots of twists and turns. I like to think it’s a bit of a cross between Woody Allen and Dan Brown. There are serious elements, and it should probably contain a ‘pre-watershed warning’ because of its scenes of a sexual nature, scenes containing violence and some with bad language. That makes it sound heavy going, but there’s black humour throughout which, I suppose, is synonymous with our little corner of the world.”

Nick Cann will be signing copies of ‘Come Home, Harry String’ at the official launch in the Concern bookshop, Holywood this Thursday 23 November from 6pm, with all proceeds going to the charity.

Cann says, “Since ‘Come Home, Harry String’ is set in Holywood, I was keen to launch it in the town, reinforcing the sense of place which pervades the book. Also, it’s out just in time for Christmas and should make a really good stocking-filler.”

The book is on sale at branches of Stewart Miller, No Alibis, Concern Holywood and other outlets province wide. The book can also be bought online here

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