The Mile

This is a book about an Edinburgh pub crawl the week before 2014’s referendum on Scottish independence. Three friends are having a reunion: a nationalist, a unionist and one on the verge of leaving Britain.

Ian, the Nationalist, has been on a mission to convert everyone before the referendum and tonight he plans to work on Euan. But Euan’s marriage is dying and he has other issues on his mind, while travel writer Stuart has decided to make the permanent move to France and doesn’t really care.

As usual, the debate rages with those convinced of their position, disbelieving the so-called evidence put forward by the other side, and so the book almost verges on a rant, but is saved by the trio meeting an escapee from a Residential Home.

95 year old Jock is ex army and has stories to tell. His mind is still sharp enough but he has no friends, except, perhaps, for Rosie, one of the Care Assistants, who defies her boss and sets out to look for him. The young men, fascinated by his stories, take him under their wing and as their pub crawl leads them down the Royal Mile, history and hope blend through light-hearted banter and a few close shaves to a denouement, planned, of course, by both Ian and Jock close to the Scottish Parliament Building.

The mile is a debut novel that, while teetering on the edge of  overkill and cliche, finally comes down on the side of passion and an antidote to boredom and cynicism. Sure, we all need to think about the way we vote next September and The Mile perfectly captures that mix of the Scottish population who don’t know what to believe or what to think.

The Mile is available in paperback and e-book format

Published by

Suse Coon

Suse Coon started life training to be an architect but ended up as a fashion buyer then civil servant. After some time out to bring up her family of three, she returned to what had been a hobby and entered the field of freelance journalism. After becoming regional correspondent, then editor of the orienteering magazine CompassSport, she formed Pages Editorial & Publishing Services. In this guise, West Lothian Life was launched, while Suse maintained a level of freelancing and wrote the award winning children's novel Richard's Castle. In 1999, Suse bought over CompassSport and found her time taken up pretty well exclusively with the two magazines. In 2004, West Lothian Life was expanded to form Lothian Life, however, the workload was too great. In 2006, CompassSport was sold and Suse concentrated on the web version of Lothian Life. Her hobbies include gardening, orienteering, sea kayaking and Tai Chi.

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