A Brampton-born author has officially released their debut novel, The Shadow of Summer. 

Marlon Yelich has published their first book, which takes place in the Lake District and wider Cumbria. 

Now a student in Scotland, Marlon took inspiration from their childhood in Cumbria and started the book as a lockdown project in 2020. 

It was originally a science-fiction novel, but evolved into a historical coming-of-age story set in 1980s Cumbria. 

They said: "The temporal setting came from my fascination with the 1980s. This was the time period my parents grew up in, hence I grew up influenced by that. Whilst the 1980s may have been a glorious time for some—and often there’s nothing wrong with that—we must remember that not everyone was on equal footing.

"Britain was ravaged by miners’ strikes, the AIDS pandemic raged, and we had not made the strides we have since then. By this, I mean that we were not aware of some issues that are far more pertinent today: mental health, the LGBTQ+ community, invisible disabilities.

"As a queer autistic person, I found it important to say that these topics did not just spawn one day: they have always been here, and people have always struggled. The only difference is now we have more awareness of it."

"This was a huge reason as to why I chose Cumbria as a setting. Whilst the two main characters are from outside the county, a large part of the book unfolds in the Lake District."

Marlon struggled growing up in Cumbria and found it to be isolating, so wanted to represent those feelings in the book.

They said: "By choosing Cumbria and the Lakes as a setting, I again wanted to emphasise how isolating it was to be queer here, and perhaps reach out to the people who are now in the position I was in a few years ago. 

"When I looked at books and media set in Cumbria, I saw a gap. I so desperately wanted to help put Cumbria further on the map, whilst also reflecting what I feel are real issues in the county."