Mouse that’s a miracle
AIDAN Caine was critically injured in a street attack last year but one year on, after making a remarkable recovery from a coma, he is about to see his first book published. The Stevenage resident, 41, (pictured right) spent seven weeks unconsciousness la
AIDAN Caine was critically injured in a street attack last year but one year on, after making a remarkable recovery from a coma, he is about to see his first book published.
The Stevenage resident, 41, (pictured right) spent seven weeks unconsciousness last summer but after waking up and starting his recovery from a brain injury he created his wonderful children's book Famouse: The Mouse that Dreams of Fame.
It has been a hard journey for Aidan, as the author explains: "I was in a coma for seven weeks last July and doctors held little hope for my recovery while in the ITU in the Royal Free, Hampstead.
"I missed hearing about the Olympics, the July 7 bombings, all of that. The world was really different when I came round.
"When I was finally recovering I used this period to write and illustrate my book.
"The idea of Famouse came to me some time back as a probable TV cartoon but, unable to go out due to the injuries, I thought it an ideal time to write and illustrate a book."
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Aidan finished his book in December last year and decided to write to publishers to see if they were interested. The first one he wrote to snapped up his tale.
"I had never written to publishers before and it was the first book I had written. The first publisher I contacted liked the book and agreed to publish.
"I had even made a clay model of the character and took it to a photo booth and took a picture of myself and the mouse and sent this off saying "look, Famouse is real.
"The publishers loved it and they have the rights to the next two stories."
The story of Famouse is that of an ordinary mouse who lives in a town house with a family who do not know he is there.
Each night he goes into the kitchen and eats some cheese before retreating to his mouse mat where he has some wonderful and exotic dreams.
Aidan said: "One night while in the house he sees a James Bond movie that the family are watching and in his dreams he goes on a Bond-esque adventure. In another dream he takes part in this reality TV pop show and he gets signed up and releases a single because he has the Pest Factor.
"He gets into all kinds of adventures and is a great read for both children and adults."
Aidan had written to Michael Bond, the creator of Paddington Bear, and asked for his opinion. He was enchanted with the response.
"He said 'I doubt if many people come out of a coma with a superb idea like yours. It sounds delightful.'
"I was really pleased with that.
"It's been a lot of work coming back from my injuries and I have had lots of support from Headway, a local support group based in Baldock which helps brain injured people.
"My injury was to the cerebellum which controls balance, memory and coordination and recovery is ongoing."
Aidan admitted that he would love to see his creation in animated form but also harbours ideas that it may one day hit the big screen.
"I would really like to see it flourish. I originally intended it as a TV show but was told that they cost too much money to produce. I decided on a book instead.
"I really think that mouse saved my life after my accident. It gave me something to work and aim for."
Famouse: The Mouse that Dreams of Fame is published by Pegasus Elliot Mackenzie publishers in their children's imprint Nightingale Books and is out next month.