Football books written for children are being given away free – one per day all next week, from tomorrrow – by The Scottish Sun.
Starting with a fantasy best-ever Scotland football team, the books are co-produced by Scottish Sun assistant features editor, James McIvor, and Michael Martin, assistant sports editor at The Mirror, in London.
Books are collected by redeeming vouchers in the paper at newsagents, RS McColl.
Says McIvor: “Many years ago, my stepson – Adam – came to live with me. Like me, he comes from a big Celtic-supporting family but, having spent his early years in a house full of women, he knew more about Coronation Street stars than Celtic stars.
“As I work back shift at The Sun I wasn't there to read him a bedtime story so, instead, I'd write down tales of Celtic legends like Jimmy McGrory, Jimmy Johnstone and Kenny Dalglish and quiz him the following morning at breakfast. He loved the stories and I realised there was potentially a book there for other wee Bhoys and girls who wanted to know the history.
“I ran the idea past my friend Michael and he loved it. The problem then was getting it published. After several chats with publishers we decided the best way to go was self-publish and a mutual friend put us in touch with Jack Geddes and Eleanor McCallum who have their own publishing services company.
“We worked so well together that, within a few months, The Story of Celtic was in the shops and Benchmark Books was formed. Jack is a big Rangers man so he wrote The Story of Rangers and since then we have published the stories of Liverpool, Manchester United, Billy McNeill, Scotland and Scotland's Greatest Team.”
Hardback editions of the softback books available via The Scottish Sun are available via www.benchmarkbooks.co.uk or send a cheque for £6.99 per title, made payable to Benchmark Books Ltd, to Benchmark Books, 6 Gleneagles Gate, Glasgow, G77 5UN. Postage and packaging is free.