THE Ledbury Reporter’s Gary Bills-Geddes is already getting very positive reviews and feedback for his first novel, ‘A Letter for Alice’, which has just been published by a New York-based publisher.

Gary, who publishes poetry and prose under his ‘pre-married’ name of Gary Bills, has signed a five year contract for the controversial work, which looks into and re-imagines the circumstances surrounding the creation of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.

The main ‘voice’ in the novel is Alice’s elder sister, Lorina, who looks back on those ‘golden days’ from the perspective of an adult.

Gary said: “I am already getting very positive feed-back, mainly from women, who cannot believe the book was written by a man. I take this as a huge compliment. A number of readers tell me they are on their second reading already, which is also most encouraging.”

One female reviewer, in a totally independent review on Amazon, praised the book’s “interesting point of view, extraordinarily well achieved by an insightful male author. This is a beautiful execution of an original, slightly chilling take on a old intrigue. The maximum of meanings, condensed in text rich with subtle allusions, could only be written by a poet! I’m gripped!”

Other readers, including in the USA, say they want to see the book turned into a film.

But Gary said: “The initial responses have caught me by surprise, but it’s early days yet and the publisher, The Little French, only launched the start of a promotional campaign this week. It helps that that my wife, Heather, has an MA in advanced digital media from the University of Worcester. The publisher offered to design the book cover, but I insisted that Heather should do it instead. She has also produced a wonderful animated ‘trailer’, with a moving and accomplished voice-over from my daughter, Isabella, and an absolutely brilliant piano rendition of a work by Satie, from Isabella’s friend, Mae Findlay. Both girls are former John Masefield High School students.

“This trailer should be out on Amazon Prime this week, and the publisher also plans to place the trailer with 78 digital TV channels world-wide, but mainly in the USA, or so I expect.”

Last year, Gary was interviewed via Skype in front of live audience in the USA, and it seems as if he will be offered this chance again soon, as part of the promotion.