Father, Son and the Pennine Way

Confident Dad, hopelessly confused son. Or the other way round…

They say that writing a book is the closest a man ever gets to giving birth. Well, after far too long in the delivery room, I’ve finally delivered the baby. Father, Son and the Pennine Way has now been published, and the e-book is available on the Kindle. Here’s the link to Amazon UK. For those of you that prefer something you can touch, hold and spill coffee on, the paperback will be along shortly.

The book is the story of the walk I did with Alex, my youngest son (and ‘Ben’ in the regular ‘Best Dad’ posts) in the summer of 2016. 5 days and 90 miles on the Pennine Way, the UK’s ‘toughest national trail.’

It’s the experiences we shared, what we learned about ourselves and each other – and the sorry tale of how I became perhaps the only person in the world to walk a mile of the Pennine Way in my underpants…

So far so good – the reviews are excellent with one person describing the book as “brilliantly written, insightful, brutally honest and laugh-out-loud funny.” (If you’d like to read of the post I wrote at the time – many of which are in the book – use the ‘Pennine Way’ category in the right hand column.)

Now there’s the unremitting slog of promoting the book. It’s not a part of the job I enjoy – like a lot of writers I’m not a natural salesman – but it has to be done. It’s as least as important as writing the book. I’ll post more updates on the progress of the book over the coming weeks: For now it’s time to drop a note to BBC local radio: yes, I am available for interviews…

After The Playground



  1. Mark a mere snippet of what I am sure is an entertaining read. Well done for surviving a 5 day jaunt with your son and vice versa I am sure in the teen world. It is great to enjoy some one on one time with our teens, they are an interesting bunch! Thanks for joining us and hope there is a sequel!. #TweensTeensBeyond

  2. I don’t know, I take a small break and come back to find you have written a book! It looks fantastic

    • Yep – very pleased with how it looks. My only gripe is the cover: the instruction was ruggedly handsome dad and hopelessly lost son. Fool of a photographer got it the wrong way round…

  3. Looking forward to reading this Mark! I hope the labour was not too difficult and that someone made you a cup of tea afterwards!! We need more books about life with teens and how it is not all bad! Thanks so much for sharing with us at #TweensTeensBeyond 🙂

    • Absolutely my pleasure, Sharon – and sorry it took me so long to get organised. Don’t worry – there will definitely be more books. I’m addicted to the gas and air… Thanks again for hosting the linky…

  4. Apologies for the random typos. I’m commenting from the phone and the fingers don’t always fit!!

  5. Congratulations Mark, this is wonderful news. What an achievement. Hanks for sharing with us at #tweensteensbeyond. You must get on to the BBC for sure and I imagine the blogging works would love to read this too. I wish you the very best of luck

    • Thanks so much, Nicola. Yep, a ton of work to do in promoting the book: it’s at least as important as writing it & it isn’t something that comes easily to me. I’d far rather be tapping out the next one on the keyboard, but as I’m not JK Rowling no-one is going to do it for me…

  6. ‘Looking forward to reading the rest of the book via kindle, I know it’ll be entertaining. I’m going to the countryside in a couple of weeks, so I’ll read it when I return so that I don’t get distracted…! Meanwhile, I’ll share your blurb on social media.

    • Thanks so much, Victoria – really appreciate that.Enjoy your break – or working break. And hope all is good with you and the family. Your son must be getting close to taking important exams by now?

      • Thanks so much Mark! ‘Always a pleasure.

        Yep! The “Mittlerer Schulabschluss” (MSA), or what used to be known as O’Levels, is coming up in the summer, & Mock Exams will be in the Winter.

        p.s. I’m getting more gigs as a political-economic Speaker ‘cos of Brexit, so I’m pretty pleased about that. It’s nice to do fun gigs of course, but I really appreciate the more serious stuff, as I actually studied politics as a young graduate. And my specialisation at the time? The EU & the Maastricht Treaty!

        • Love that, Victoria – Mittlerer etc sounds like a serious exam! All the very best – I hope he does well. And congratulations on all the speaking: you never know where it might lead. I did a radio interview for the book a fortnight ago – on the back of it I’m now discussing ghosting someone’s autobiography (showbiz, but I can’t say who!) Thanks again for your support – all the very best

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