Debut novel author - and former Northampton Chronicle & Echo journalist - inspired by pandemic puppy purchase

‘I wanted to write a book that would make people smile’

Friday, 20th May 2022, 10:27 am

A former Northampton Chronicle & Echo journalist has released his first novel, a quirky and whimsical self-help parody, that looks at the world of self-improvement through a dog’s eyes.

Making Very Difficult Things Easy to Do is being published by The Book Guild at the end of this month (May 2022).

Jonathan Cross has worked on local and national newspapers, including the Chron where he began his journalistic career. He now runs his own PR consultancy business based in Nottingham.

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Jonathan Cross

The book features Bobs the dog as the narrator and unlikely inspirational guide on the self-help pathway to greatness. Illustrations of Bobs and his cast of canine companions are provided by cartoonist Royston Robertson, whose work is regularly featured in Private Eye.

Jonathan says: “The book was written during the pandemic when some of my work slowed and I had the opportunity to indulge myself in a piece of writing of pure escapism. We had recently bought a puppy and I thought it would be fun to frame the usual self-help/self-improvement narrative through the central character of an over-confident cockapoo, the self-declared world’s ‘highest-achieving dog’.

“I wanted to write a book that would make people smile during a fairly dismal time for the world, and while some of the commentary is daft and slightly surreal, there is an underlying message of the value of compassion and kindness in society. And by reading the guide, if you believe what Bobs says, you can learn that very difficult things can actually be really easy to do.”

For further information or to order a copy, visit

Bobs the dog