A PAIR of mums from Abingdon have created a children’s book designed to help parents talk to youngsters about head lice.

Julia Thomas and Julia King came up with the idea for their illustrated story after there was an outbreak of the insidious insects at Miss Thomas’ sons’ school.

Aimed at four to seven-year-olds, Super Nit follows the fortunes of one plucky louse – and his host Harry – on a 'hair-raising adventure'.

She said: “I started telling stories to my son Harry, who is now eight, a couple of years ago about a super nit and he really liked hearing them.

“The subject matter is something all parents, children and teachers experience and this seemed like a fun way to talk about it.

“The story in the first book features things like a nit war over the centre parting of a child’s head, but is really about why the super nit shouldn’t actually be on the head to begin with.”

Miss Thomas and her writing partner are mum and step-mum to the same daughter, Natasha, 16, as well as both having young children.

The 46-year-old said: “It may seem a little strange for us to be doing this together but it has worked really well.

“Julia has a degree in writing and I have a background in writing so it made sense.”

Once the pair had finished the story – Super Nit: Rescue Mission – they had the tale illustrated by artist Andrea Vitali and, after a fruitless search for a publisher, decided to produce the book themselves.

Miss Thomas, who is also a vocal coach and pianist, said: “It was really exciting when the book was actually in our hands. It has been a long process to get to this point.

“With so many celebrity children’s authors these days it can be harder for normal authors to break through.”

She added: “Though the book is self-published it is available from all the major retailers online, including Waterstones and Amazon but it’s made to order meaning it can take a few weeks to arrive.”

Miss Thomas said she hoped the adventures of Super Nit would continue in future books and said she had been encouraged by the positive response so far.

She said: “People seem to really like them and we’ve had a lot of people praise the fun way we’ve tackled the topic.

“We have another two written at the moment and there are more planned.”

The pair will be holding an official launch event next month at Willow’s Shake Shop in Abingdon, which will include themed milkshakes and live music.

They will also be at Florence Park in Oxford on June 16 for this year's FloFest.

See juplicatebooks.co.uk