Best selling author at signing session

Alexander McCall Smith
Alexander McCall Smith

Bestselling and televised author Alexander McCall Smith arrives in the Calder Valley on Monday - a real treat for readers and possibly the first in a line of them.

Hebden Bridge bookseller The Book Case, on Market Street, is hosting a special book signing by Alexander at Hebden Bridge Town Hall on Monday, February 3 (7.30pm, tickets £3 with £1 redeemable against a book purchase on the night) with hopes of an evening of sheer delight and with more in prospect if it goes well.

Since re-opening following the devastating floods of 2012, a major aim of the shop has been to attract top line authors to the town said Kate Claughan, of The Book Case.

“We have already had a lot of interest and we’re hoping for a good turnout to encourage other authors to visit.

“The Book Case was lucky enough to be one of a few independent book shops to be chosen by the publisher as part of Alexander’s signing tour for his new novel, The Forever Girl,” she said.

The author, whose best-selling series The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency was made into a television serial several years ago, took time out of a busy schedule to speak to us ahead of the visit and was very pleased to be supporting an independent bookseller.

“I think small independent bookshops - and there’s a role for larger bookshops as well - are a tremendous asset in any community. They enable people to handle books before they buy them. The great pleasure of bookshops is being able to go in and browse,” said Mr McCall Smith.

“The other thing is they order their own stock, so they know what people are interested in around their area, also stocking books of local interest. They have a terrific social aspect.”

As well his series, Alexander writes stand-alone novels of which The Forever Girl is one. It is a stand-alone, big hearted and often heartbreaking novel about unrequieted love and the unexpected places it takes us.

His signing sessions always include a question-and-answer session and Hebden Bridge, a place Alexander has visited before, is in the company of American cities and Australian ones on his current promotional tour.

He was pleased with how the televised version of The No. 1 Ladies Detetctive Agency turned out and it undoubtedly encouraged people to read not only that series, set in Botswana, but to read other works, also.

“I have several popular series so people read more than one, with setting ranging from Botswana to Scotland, Australia and Singapore. I go to Botswana each year but I don’t write about it when I’m there! I write about Scotland, and when I’m in Scotland I write about Botswana!” he said.

For more details about Monday’s event, call The Book Case on 01422 845353 or email