Renowned author Philip Pullman will launch his highly anticipated new book in Oxford this October.

The writer of His Dark Materials will be signing copies of the latest book in the series The Book of Dust at Blackwell's Bookshop on Broad Street at 3.30pm on 19 October.

Speaking to the Oxford Mail, Mr Pullman said: “This is a very special event for Blackwell’s. It is the pre-eminent Oxford bookseller and I really wanted to have an event there. There are several events planned across the country but Oxford is the first and we are doing it on the day of publication as this is the place where it all started.”

The Book of Dust will be a companion trilogy to the His Dark Materials series which has sold 17.5 million copies worldwide and been translated into 40 languages..

The first volume of the new series is called La Belle Sauvage and is the first new work set in the fantastical world for 17 years.

Many of the characters made famous by the first three books are expected to appear in the new trilogy.

The streets and landmarks of Oxford are again set to play a prominent role in the adventures.

Mr Pullman has revealed that the city's rivers and canals are a key part of the new story and that the ruined 12th century Godstow Abbey has been brought back to life.

The writer, who lives in Oxford, joked that he set the books in the city because he is "lazy" and "didn't want to research anywhere else."

He went on to explain that the real reason was because he believes that the city sits at a "crossroads of history, between the old and new worlds."

Mr Pullman continued: "It is the starting point for a lot of fantasy. I don’t know why. Maybe there is something in the air or the water, I don’t know. But something about the place does prompt fantastical thoughts. It’s a very interesting place to write about and also a very easy place to make stuff up about.”

Tickets are free and available online but Zool Verjee, the Deputy Manager of Blackwell's, said that availability was very limited.

Verjee said: "Philip Pullman's 'The Book of Dust' is undoubtably the book of the year and we just can't wait to read it. We are honoured that Philip Pullman will be signing copies of his book on publication day in the bookshop and very much look forward to the event. Tickets were made available on Wednesday and the event is nearly fully booked. Everyone who works here is just tingling with excitement at this news."

To attend the event customers need to buy a copy of the book from Blackwell's.