GENTLEMAN Sam promises to be a heart-wrenching read.

The aim of Penny Hartdale's latest book, her fifth, is to help children cope with the difficulty of losing a relative, friend or beloved pet.

And the inspiration behind it is a young girl who knows only too well the devastation of losing someone special.

Eleven-year-old Emily Cammack lost her younger brother, Thomas, to cancer when she was just six.

Eager to help other children cope with the difficulty of loving a loved one, Emily helped Penny to pen her latest book, 'Gentleman Sam' which, in a fitting tribute, will be dedicated to the memory of Thomas Cammack.

The pair met when Emily visited Hart Farm with family and friends who had also lost a son to cancer. Their visit was to meet Murphy the mini donkey who, during a visit to Martin House, had met Thomas Hudson.

Both boys were battling cancer at the same time and died within days of each other. Since then their families have become good friends.

Penny dedicated her second book 'Murphy the Donkey that couldn't be Eeyore' to Thomas Hudson. After inviting the Hudson family to meet Murphy again, Penny met Emily who, she discovered, wanted to be an author when she grew up.

Discovering how Emily was keen to help other children cope with losing someone special, Penny invited Emily to help with her fifth children's picture book.

Crediting her writing partner, Penny says: "I have had the special and wonderful experience of writing this book with the help and insights of a remarkable, compassionate and articulate young girl who has experienced first-hand the heart wrenching loss when her younger brother Thomas finally lost his battle with cancer. Emily has an inspirational and critical friend and this book would not be what it is without her considerable contributions and insights."

Toni Cammack, Emily's mother described the impact of helping with the book on her daughter's own journey of grief.

"I think it's helped Emily to have a reason to think about everything she's been through, it can be easy to push emotions away but Gentleman Sam has allowed Emily to explore those emotions."

She says of her daughter's ambitions: "We had often talked about writing a book in order to help others but kind of thought it would be in the future. It's given Emily huge satisfaction that the book could potentially ease someone else's pain."

Illustrated by Rob Keep, Gentleman Sam tells the tale of a black Labrador who spent the last five months of his life at Hart Farm where he won the hearts of many including postman, Ged, and Dalehead vet, Leanne.

Aimed at children aged three to seven, the book is priced at £4.99 and is available online at

It is also available from The Smith, the Post Office and the Hub in Grassington; at the farm shop in Cracoe; at the Martin House shop and the WCF animal food shop in Skipton; at the Dalesman cafe in Gargrave and at Dalehead vet and the 'House that Jack Built' toy shop in Settle.