A 10-year-old farmer’s son has written a book about life on his family’s Cornish dairy farm, which has been published by his local county council.
Sixth-generation farmer Andrew Rowe from Tredinnick Farm, Cornwall, decided to try his hand at writing after he struggled to be inspired by any of the books that were pitched for his reading ability.
“Reading can be quite difficult and I wanted books that were interesting, but not too hard to read,” said Andrew, who has dyslexia. “I live on a farm so decided to write something about what I know.”
Under the guidance of his dyslexia adviser he wrote A Cornish farm – a boy’s view, inspired by day-to-day life on the family’s 600-acre dairy farm, halfway between Liskeard and Bodmin. The book includes a tale about “A mad day on the farm” when Mini Milk the cow needed an emergency caesarean, step-by-step instructions on “How to milk a cow”, pictures of his favourite tractors and an interview with his granddad about what life was like on the farm when he was a boy.
Mum Kathryn said: “Andrew loves all aspects of the farm, and has always said he wants to be a farmer when he grows up. He’ll happily go into the parlour for milking, or follow his Dad around making sure all the gates are shut behind him. This book is his interpretation of what he sees his Dad talk about and breathe every day.
“He is quite surprised by his stardom since the launch of his book, and has enjoyed seeing himself in the local press and on the TV,” Kathryn added. “He’s delighted that others are really enjoying his book and gaining knowledge about our way of life, which can sometimes be so different to his friends.”
Cornwall County Council has printed 250 copies of the book, which features hand-drawn illustrations by Andrew’s best friend from school, Jack Yeo.
“Many children find reading difficult and welcome books that are of specific interest to them,” said dyslexia adviser Jane Beaumont. For Andrew this was farming, but for other children in Cornwall it might be surfing, the countryside or beaches. There is great potential for other schools to replicate this idea.”
• A Cornish farm – a boy’s view costs £6, including postage and packing. Contact Liskeard Bookshop on 01579 342112 or Cornwall County Council on 01579 345650.