Historical Fiction, 92,000 words
Manuscript finished in June 2016
Story: Leoloni Lewis wants to be famous. He wants a statue of his handsome likeness erected with prominence in his Scottish village of Gannochy. Is it too much to ask? But tragically for this young man, he lacks what it takes to win the hearts of the villagers: he’s too neurotic, too cowardly and destined to waste his time doing menial labour in Gannochy’s victory garden while others are off at war dying in heroic and entertaining ways. So, driven to get a statue at any cost, Leoloni leaves his ailing mother, leaves the garden and sets off to join the fight.
Before he can enlist, however, Leoloni finds himself bound for Iceland as a prisoner on an impossible ship, helmed by a stubborn captain who resembles his murdered father. Now the only person who can help Leoloni ‘help himself’ is another prisoner on the ship, the renowned British fighter pilot and positivity guru Adrian R. Barry. Through Barry’s friendship and self-help philosophy of ‘Magnetism!’, Leoloni must develop a winning personality so he can overcome the captain, solve the mystery of the ship, save an Icelandic town full of children ‘with their whole lives ahead of them’ and return to Gannochy a famous hero. But along the way, as the true cost of his drive for success becomes clear, he’s forced to face his mental demons and re-evaluate what it means to be a man.