As Christmas approaches, we've compiled a round-up of the the best new books in town, all written by local authors or set in local landscapes.

THE debut novel by award-winning journalist Diana Cambridge, whose family lived in Weymouth, takes readers back to 1960s New York. Don't Think a Single Thought follows the glamorous and successful protagonist Emma Bowden, whose picture-perfect life suddenly spirals out of control after a child drowns at sea and suspicion is cast upon her. Old wounds resurface, and a persistent voice in Emma's head threatens to destroy all that she has worked for.

Diana's novel, published by Louise Walters Books in September, lays bare the reality of womanhood and examines the decisions, and mistakes, that shape all of our lives.

Now living in Bath, Diana was the writer in residence at the 2019 Sherborne Literary Festival. She works as a radio presenter and tutor, giving workshops on creative writing and sharing her literary expertise with budding authors and book enthusiasts. Diana is also the agony aunt for Writing Magazine, and was a features editor for women's magazine Prima. Her journalistic work has been published in a range of national newspapers, including The Guardian and The Times.

  • Don't Think a Single Thought is now available for £7.99 from Louise Walters Books, Amazon, and all good bookshops.

THE latest novel by Dorchester-based author Eve Bonham follows a courageous woman in search of her long-lost grandchildren. Set in a sleepy Dorset village, Dear Magpies sees Josie Cuff attempting to trace the only family she has left, who have disappeared on the other side of the world. Josie writes letters to her grandchildren that may never be delivered, telling them about her turbulent life in South America and her dreams for a new life in the countryside. Yet things take a sinister turn when an intruder starts invading Josie's home, and her hopes for a joyful family reunion begin to fade.

Eve is the author of several books, including a short story collection and novels To The End of the Day and The Lost Journey Homeward.

Published by SilverWood Books in November, Dear Magpies explores the ups and downs of life and love through the eyes of a devoted grandmother. Dear Magpies is now available for £9.99 from SilverWood Books, Amazon, and all good bookshops.

THE true story of a First World War pilot, whose mother was born in Melcombe Regis, Weymouth, and whose parents retired to Dorset, has been documented in a new book by his first cousin twice removed, Jill Bush.

19-year-old Lionel Morris joined the Royal Flying Corps on the Western Front in 1916, learning alongside the great ace Albert Ball. In September 1916, he was the first pilot to be shot down by the legendary Red Baron, the circumstances around which marked a pivotal shift in the aerial war.

Jill's biographical book, Lionel Morris and the Red Baron, uses previously unpublished archive material and the words of official records to trace Lionel's short but extraordinary life, revealing how his death contributed to the strategic development of future RAF tactics. The book also explores some of the family's close Dorset origins, including Lionel's baptism at St John's Church in Weymouth.

Lionel Morris and the Red Baron is published by Pen and Sword, and is Jill's debut book. The author lives in east Sussex and was inspired by her father's memories of Lionel's mother and the family legend of a connection with the great German ace of World War One. Upon discovering that Lionel's plane was the first to officially fall victim to the Red Baron, Jill's interest was piqued and her quest to document his story begun.

  • Lionel Morris and the Red Baron is now available from Pen and Sword, Amazon and all good bookshops, RRP £25.00.

WAR diaries belonging to Lieutenant Colonel Anthony Barne have been published by his grandson, Charles Barne.

Churchill's Colonel follows Anthony from August 1939 to July 1945, during which time he went from a recently-married captain in the Royal Dragoons stationed in Palestine, to commanding officer of the 4th Hussars. Anthony wrote a diary entry every day, documenting his experiences in Egypt and El Alamein as well as his arrival in Italy in 1944, where he recounts the campaign as the Allies pushed north.

Anthony's grandson Charles, who now lives in Wiltshire, grew up on a farm in Bere Regis and lived only yards from his grandparents, with whom he shared a very close relationship. He recalls how their house was dotted with unusual memorabilia from the war years, including military hats and a piece of Italian fighter fuselage.

Some years after his grandfather's death, Charles came across his diaries from the wartime era. After three years spent writing up, editing and compiling extracts from the journals, Churchill's Colonel was published by Pen and Sword in 2019. With extracts varying in tone from witty and outrageous to poignant and philosophical, the book gives an unparalleled insight into life as a colonel during the Second World War.

  • Churchill's Colonel is now available from Pen and Sword, Amazon and all good bookshops, RRP £25.00.

AUTHOR Lulu Taylor's latest novel is set in the wilderness of Tawray, a house near the coast of Cornwall. A Midwinter Promise follows the Pengelly family as they reunite around the sickbed of a beloved relative, finally forced to confront the emotions and secrets that have divided them for years. Switching between the past and the present, the novel explores the impact of lives marked by death, divorce and tragedy.

Lulu lives in West Dorset, near the Somerset border, and A Midwinter Promise will be published on November 28 by Pan Macmillan. Having moved around the world as a child, Lulu went on to study English at Oxford and published her first novel, Heiresses, in 2007. She has gone on to write several more novels, including Midnight Girls, Beautiful Creatures and The Snow Angel.

  • A Midwinter Promise is available from Pan Macmillan, Amazon, and all good bookshops, RRP £7.99.

AFTER the widespread success of The Ordnance Survey Puzzle Book, the creators are back with its sequel, bigger and better than ever. Published by Trapeze, The Ordnance Survey Puzzle Tour of Britain takes readers through 40 of OS's best regional maps, with hundreds of puzzles, brainteasers, navigational tests and word games to keep you entertained. A local highlight is Swanage, dubbed London-by-the-sea, where challenging questions ask how many streets end in lane and in what field might you expect witches to gather. With four levels of difficulty, the family-friendly quiz book also celebrates the regional diversity, history and landscapes which make Great Britain so great.

  • The Ordnance Survey Puzzle Tour of Britain is available now from Amazon and all good bookshops, RRP £14.99.

A REVEALING new royal biography, exploring the lives and loves of the Mountbatten family, has been written by historian Andrew Lownie and published by Blink Publishing. Based on interviews, archives and new information gained through Freedom of Information requests, the biography unveils the intimate marriage between Dickie and Edwina Mountbatten, who endured infidelity, manipulation and disaster at the heights of glamour and power. Allegations of possible abuse at Bridport, between Dickie Mountbatten's school tutor Fredrick Lawrence Long are also explored within the book.

  • The Mountbattens: Their Lives and Loves is available now from Amazon and all good bookshops, RRP £14.99.