An iPhone app featuring Cervantes’ talking dogs and a new literary novel.

Last week I spent a day in the North London Street Studios assisting on the shoot for an exciting new iPhone novel by Neil George Ayres. The day was to shoot the cover for the app with London-based fashion photographer Nicole Heiniger.

Rather suitably, the beautiful cover star is Cat Lane who just happens to be a talented new photographer herself. She entered a Flickr-run competition to find a cover model. And unsurprisingly, she won. Cat, 19, is currently networking to break into the industry herself as she finishes her course in Fashion Photography at London’s LCC, which spawned creative giants such as Rankin, Neville Brody and Sir John Hegarty.

Author Neil George Ayres has teamed up with Russell Quinn, who developed Time Magazine’s top 10 recommended Small Chair app for McSweeney’s magazine, and illustrator Johanna Basford to produce an iPhone app for The New Goodbye, his latest novel.

But he’s not content with simply producing a digital book.

Neil feels that the wonderful medium of digital books hosts an ability to offer much more than a small, paperless novel. Smart authors such as Neil know it’s not about simply digitizing print anymore. The technology is there to enrich a reader’s experience beyond print; immersing them in a world steeped in words, music, and visual embellishment.

In Neil’s up-coming novel, The New Goodbye, the app will include fine art illustrations by Basford to feature as chapter prefaces. The artistic talents of Johanna are used to further beautiful effect in an illustrated and interactive edition of Cervantes’ The Dialogue of the Dogs, included within the App. Further to this, it will feature a comprehensive ‘making of’ section, with interviews, photos and video footage from the shoot, a music video to a dedicated soundtrack by Rich Watson (Ford Focus car parts song) and more. All in all enriching the experience way beyond that of a traditional book.

The New Goodbye.
Alex Mooney hasn’t seen his friend Mila since she disappeared twelve years ago. Now she’s turned up on his doorstep looking for a place to stay. Both know Alex’s wife and brother-in-law won’t be as happy as he is to see Mila. A quiet and introverted man, Alex’s life is world away from Balkan gun-running and Mexican drug dealers, but these appear to be the reasons for Mila’s return.

The New Goodbye by Neil George Ayres is a novel about memory, love and the implications of the choices we make, or it’s about guns, sex and death depending on your outlook.

A free sampler will be available from the AppStore, with an in-app payment option for accessing the full version. The Red Diesel app will launch this spring.

Cat Lane. Cover model and fashion photographer.


Nicole Heiniger
(View her video)
Cat Lane
Saskia Price
Johanna Basford
Behind the scenes:
Yong Ping Loo