grippenham-tales banner from FINAL  copyIn July of 2012, just before I started recording “The Doob Doo Album” I finished writing a novel.  It had taken five and a half years to get from first word to final draft.  The manuscript then sat on the shelf for a couple of years whilst I recorded the album, then formed Blues Horizon and starting work on sets for live gigs, and completed the second “Bus Depot Blues” album.  Having completed those projects, I finally published the novel on Kindle in November 2014.

The novel is called “The GRiPPENHAM Tales – The Hidden Truth”
It is a fantasy story for children of all ages.  From 14 to 94.

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I often describe it as Famous Five meet Harry Potter.  It is the adventure of four children; twins Arthur and Ivy, their 2nd cousin Mildred, and Arthur’s best friend Tom.  They live in the slightly magical village of GRiPPENHAM in the fantasy land of g’Shia.  The story is full of danger and excitement as the story of their fight to save the lives of Tom’s parents brings them in to contact with numerous colourful characters.

Available exclusively from Kindle Books

Visit the author’s web site.

We are in the throws of publishing through Austin Macauley – This has involved another few rounds of editing and a few adjustments – so – to be honest – I would wait until the new edition is published – both in paperback and on Kindle – later in 2017.  – Just saying.



Readers’ Comments

This debut novel from John C Stannard is a real gem. It is a gripping tale told with sharp wit and unique comedy. The word play is excellent and keeps you smiling and “on your toes” all the way through.The characters are memorable and their names worthy of a Dickens novel. It was a very enjoyable read and I would recommend it to anyone, child or adult, who likes Tolkien-esk fantasy laced with rich wit and humour. Definitely a Five Star for me.      Jan Moncrieff


I really enjoyed reading this book.  Very cleaver use of words, had many a chuckle.
Great description of people and places.
 Stuart Douglas