Salford resident Rob Martin has written a book with a disabled superhero as the main character to help inspire children growing up with disabilities.
The writer used the inheritance he received when his mum died in 2019 to write a children’s book “with an underlying message of celebrating people for their differences.”
Instead of blowing his money on a fancy holiday, Rob chose to do something for children who are struggling.
Rob believes “publishing a book can have a much bigger impact” on regular people.
The picture book is written entirely in rhyme and tells the story of a disabled boy called Joe and his best friend, his dog Dusty.
Joe’s unwavering devotion to his dog and his infectious love of music and dancing show his alien kidnappers that it’s important to be kind and have fun.
The book’s importance, says its creator, is that it focuses not on its disabled hero’s challenges, but on how Joe’s differences are in fact strengths.
For Rob, who grew up on the Wirral, this story was very personal.
After losing his severely disabled teenage sister Pauline when he was six to multiple disabilities, 50 years later he wrote this book for his her.
Rob says he now feels the significance of his disabled young champion to be even greater as it shows the power of human connection which people have lost due to the recent pandemic and isolation.
Rob hopes the book’s powerful message will teach young people that their differences make the world a better place.
The author already has a number of adventures planned for Joe and Dusty in the future.
You can buy a copy of Joe & Dusty from £9.99 at joeanddustybooks.com