Leyburn author ‘overwhelmed’ after book becomes Amazon bestseller

Hannah with Little Alf.

Author and businesswoman Hannah Russell says she is feeling “overwhelmed” after her new book became an Amazon bestseller.

Little Alf  – The true story of a pint-sized pony who found his forever home – was launched earlier this month at the Horse of the Year Show at the NEC in Birmingham.

During the week-long event Hannah sold thousands of copies – and had to sign every one.

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Many more have since been sold online at Amazon, as well as at Waterstones and other book shops.

Hannah was back in her shop in Leyburn yesterday and admitted that while she was enjoying the success, she was finding the experience a litle surreal.

Hannah was signed up by literary agents after an article on her appeared in The Times.

This led to a book deal with the Little Brown Book Group, who publish books by authors including JK Rowling.

Hannah said: “It’s been a surprise how it’s gone. I thought it would do quite well but to see it on the Amazon bestseller list was just so amazing.

“To get this response is overwhelming. I had to do a talk at the NEC in front of thousands of people and I was so nervous but the lights were down so I couldn’t see them which helped.

“You can usually find me in an old fleece mucking out the horses so this has been very different.”

The book tells how Hannah’s life was turned upside down by some bad news and how Little Alf helped her deal with it.

Now 20, Hannah was advised five years ago that she should not ride again because of damage to her back from previous riding accidents.

Soon after receiving the news, a local Shetland pony breeder offered Hannah another horse.

The woman said she had a six-month-old Shetland pony she couldn’t keep – the horse had dwarfism meaning she couldn’t breed from him.

Little Alf came into her life and the pair have been inseparable ever since. Alf has helped Hannah build a business and do charity work. The pair have also had lots of adventures together.

To find out more about Hannah and Little Alf, or to buy a copy of the book, click here.