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RPL hosts book launch event for local picture book author

July 27 at 1 p.m., local author John Cantrell held a book launch at the Russellville Public Library to promote his first book, “Kids on Patrol,” a picture book about bullying.

The story follows main character Jimmy Clofton and his friends as they have to deal with a bully and shows how they work together to try to improve the situation.

According to the book description, “Big Ben is the type of bully every kid fears: he’s big, mean and gets away with everything. No one at school is safe. After years of coping, watching and suffering, Jimmy Clofton has to take a stand – one that changes everything.”

Bullied himself as a child, Cantrell is now a full-time police officer for the Littleville Police Department. He grew up in Vina and lives in Belgreen. He is married to Regina Cantrell. Their children, second-grader Xander and kindergartener Freya, also attended the event.

Cantrell said he remembers what it felt like to be bullied as a child, and bullying is something he sees all too often in the course of his job. “This book gives me another avenue to try to reach people and hopefully have a positive effect on their lives,” Cantrell said. He said the solution presented in the book is not meant to be a one-size-fits-all solution but rather one idea of something that might help.

Retired local elementary school teacher Gayle McAllister read the book to those in attendance at Saturday’s book launch. Afterward, Cantrell sold and signed copies of his book.

“Kids on Patrol” is illustrated by Tom Cassese. It is available from MascotBooks.com and online from Barnes & Noble and from Amazon.

Additional information is available on the book’s Facebook page, Kids on Patrol.

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