THE landscape and wildlife of Herefordshire's Golden Valley inspired Ross-on-Wye author William Corlett's acclaimed Magician's Quartet, but he has moved further afield for his latest book.

Kitty is based on the true story of a stray puppy, taken in by friends of William Corlett, who meets and travels the dusty roads of Southern Spain with another dog, Bailey.

"Although Kitty is a children's book, it deals with big subjects," says its author. "It's a totally unsentimental, tough little book about life, death and survival."

Bill is hoping that Kitty will enjoy a similar success to the Magician's Quartet, which was televised by the BBC, winning an Emmy for the script, also written by Bill.

"I'd never have written the Magician's Quartet if I hadn't moved here 17 years ago," he says. "The four books were all connected to the move and getting a dog. We walked in all weathers in the Forest of Dean and I found that I couldn't not write about it."

Although it's been several years since the publication of his last book, Bill has not been idle. Among recent projects was the screen adaptation of Rosamunde Pilcher's novel Winter Solstice, now filmed, but with no date for transmission, starring the late Peter Ustinov, Sinead Cusack and Jean Simmons.