Actor Robert Cavanah took centre stage to promote a local author's new book at its launch event in Musselburgh.

The Edinburgh-born film, theatre and television star, who starred in Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life and Sahara, read a few chapters from Niddrie Boys which was written by Alex Brown in memory of his younger brother Stephen.

A launch event at the Store Club in North High Street, Musselburgh, attracted 200 guests and another at Craigmillar Community Arts Centre on Newcraighall Road, welcomed 70 well-wishers.

Niddrie Boys, a work of creative non-fiction, was officially released to coincide with Stephen's birthday. He passed away at the age of 27 after contracting HIV when he was 15.

Alex, 58, who owns Ideal Flooring Solutions in Musselburgh, said: "The book launch was amazing. Both events went really well and the shops sold out very quickly. The reviews are very good and it’s all gone a bit crazy."

He added: "The distribution company are frantically trying to make sure more copies are printed before Christmas. All the shops sell out as fast as they get more. I've been told it's a bestseller. I'm over the moon and humbled but delighted."

Alex has already enjoyed the publication of his first novel, Hit Me – a dark comic thriller about an ex-boxer who is wrongly diagnosed with cancer and ends up in the fight of his life.

An ex-boxer himself, Alex said: "Hit Me was a work of fiction and Niddrie Boys is a work of creative non-fiction and is based on true events and growing up in Niddrie through some very tough times like in 1984 when Niddrie, Craigmillar and the surrounding areas were so desperate that Oxfam donated £15,000 to be spent over a three year period, and the area was being compared to the Bronx in New York."

Alex took part in a launch event in Waterstones at Ford Kinnaird retail park and featured on Radio Saltire.

READ MORE: Musselburgh author launches book in memory of his brother

"I feel it's great to now be recognised by Waterstones as an up-and-coming relevant author, with them being the biggest bookstore chain in the UK. The book sold out in all Waterstones on the first day, and the book is selling very fast," he added.

He has been "overwhelmed" by the support he's received from people including family, friends and the community.

Grandfather-of-five Alex – a strong supporter of many East Lothian charities and good causes – has also turned his literary talents to writing children’s books for his grandchildren and has been celebrating the self-publication, via Class Moustache Publishing, of the tales of Snoozlewhoosh, a toy owl.

He said the sequel to Hit Me called Hit Me Harder will be out next summer.

He was delighted to have Robert Cavanah, who is now a good friend of his, read from the book at the launch.

The actor, writer, director and producer played Adam Carnegie in The Royal and Tommy Grant in EastEnders. He starred in the 1998 ITV version of Wuthering Heights as Heathcliff. He played Ian in Emmerdale and guest starred on the second series of Outlander.

He appeared at the Royal National Theatre in Men Should Weep and played the title role in MacBeth at the Octagon Theatre, Bolton.

He played John Churchill in the RSC's production of Helen Edmundson's Queen Anne and Scandal in the RSC production of Love for Love.

He starred in Cracker, Blue Dove, Cadfael, Hamish MacBeth, Kavanagh QC, Rose and Maloney, Rebus, Silent Witness, Highlander: The Raven, Casualty, DCI Banks, Waterloo Road, The Bill, The Governor, The Borgias, Shetland, Hatfields & McCoys and as Robert Stevenson in the BBC television drama-documentary series Seven Wonders of the Industrial World.