THE unlikely tale of an animal lover and his four-legged companion’s journey around the world will be transformed into a book.

Nala’s World: One Man, His Rescue Cat and a Bike Ride Around the Globe will be released later this year.

Dean Nicholson set off from his home in Dunbar in September 2018 with the dream to pedal his way from country to country.

However, his journey took an unlikely twist when he formed a friendship with Nala, a small cat.

Since then, his adventure has caught the attention of millions of people on social media and he, alongside Garry Jenkins – the author, with James Bowen, of A Street Cat Named Bob – are turning the story into a book.

Dean said: “I’m thrilled to be able to tell our story in full in a book and explain how this little cat has completely changed my life.

“Before I started on this epic bike journey I’d been in danger of going down the wrong path in life.

“Since I hooked up with Nala, she has given me a purpose to life and reason to grow up.

“I’m still someone who wants to experience life to the full, but I’m a 100 per cent better person.

“I’m achieving something and hopefully making a difference too.

“I’m also learning a lot of important lessons, not just about our planet and the people who live on it, but about myself.”

The new book is due to be released in September.

Dean came across the furry friend who would change his life while in Bosnia.

He was just leaving the country to head into neighbouring Montenegro when he became aware of a companion.

He said: “I had my sound system on and, in the break of a song, I heard loud meowing coming from behind me and here was this scruffy-looking kitten chasing me up the hill.

“I sat down with her, gave her some pesto for lunch, and she has not left my side since!

“This all happened about 10 miles from any town so I felt she had been abandoned.

“I got her into Montenegro and straight to a vet to see if she was microchipped and she wasn’t, so I decided to keep her and take her with me.

“I’ve became quite attached to Nala – it’s hard not to when you spend 24/7 with each other, and she also has the best personality, so it’s hard not to fall in love with her!

“I don’t know how I managed to cycle on my own beforehand for so long. She’s like the perfect sidekick.”

The kitten was nursed back to health with the help of local vets and named Nala after the lioness in The Lion King, becoming inseparable from Dean.

She also became something of a social media star.

The video of their first meeting went ‘viral’ on animal news website The Dodo – racking up views from 128 million people – while more than 800,000 followers were subsequently attracted to Dean’s Instagram and YouTube updates on his progress around the globe with Nala (@1bike1world).

The book will tell the story of how they met, forged a friendship and spent a year on the road together, visiting eight countries and covering thousands of miles – “learning lessons about life, love and our planet along the way”.

With Nala at the front of the bike in a special cat basket, they have encountered everything from bad weather and flat tyres to cleaning up beaches and kindness from strangers.

Dean, 32 – whose parents Avril and Neil live in Dunbar – has been ticking off the countries as he makes his way across Europe.

The former Dunbar Grammar School student has already passed through Scotland, England, Netherlands, Belgium, France, Switzerland, Italy, Croatia, Bosnia, Montenegro and Albania on his epic journey.

An online appeal was set up to help cover the costs of vet bills and other treatments, with an initial target of £1,000.

That was quickly smashed, with more than £32,000 sent in by kind-hearted people from across the world.

To support Dean and Nala, go to