Whitesburg KY

Great books from mountain natives

If you are allowing the summer to slip by without anything to relieve your boredom and if you believe that laughter is the best medicine you can take for almost anything, then call me Dr. Adams because I’m getting ready to write a prescription.

Retired University of Kentucky engineering professor and Harlan native Richard Glen “Dick” Edwards took up fiction writing a few years back and recently released his 7th book of what can, genre wise, be best described as Harlan County humor.

For a more complete synopsis than this column can afford of all of Dick’s book titles, I suggest you go to the Barnes and Noble website and do a quick search for Richard G. Edwards. In the meantime, I will suggest you get your hands on “Nuclear Attack” and “The Adventure’s of Preacher Puss”. I’ve written up the first five titles here in days long gone by.

“Nuclear Attack” is the fictional story of North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un’s desire to have a nuclear warhead launched into Los Angeles to celebrate his birthday. Thriller readers will enjoy this book because it does, in fact, keep you on the edge of the bed or chair or wherever you may be reading. It will also keep you laughing way out loud as one thing after another goes hopelessly awry. Fans of Carl Hiaasen, Dave Barry and Louis Grizzard will love the book as well as or better than Dick’s previous five-volume Anchor Cross Series. I, also, just finished reading Dick’s “ The Adventures of Preacher Puss,” the ongoing saga of a cat who has been a central character in all of Dick’s books to date. However, this tale is told in first person, by the cat herself.

Maybe it’s because I enjoy keeping company with cats more than I do with a lot of people, but this book is my favorite Dick Edwards title to date.

Preacher Puss is a rescued female cat which was adopted by the Harlan County Sheriff ’s Office after a church fire that occurred in the first Anchor Cross title. She plays significant roles (saves the day) in apprehending a host of criminals throughout all of Dick’s titles to date. In her own book, the North Koreans are at it again, this time planning to bomb the home of several characters who played key roles in stopping their attempted “Nuclear Attack.” Cat lovers, especially, are going to love this one.

Again, I urge you to go to Barnes and Noble’s web site, search Richard G. Edwards, and read more details about all Dick’s titles. But don’t order the books from that site because you can save five bucks when shipping costs are added in by ordering them directly from the author. The books are not available for ereaders and are $15 per title, print, paperback only, and Dick will pay the postage. Send payment to Dick Edwards, 3333 Crown Crest Road, Lexington, KY 40517. Email richardglennedwards@gmail.com if you have other questions.

Points East

In other Kentucky literary news, I recently completed the best serious fiction read I’ve had in several years and it, too, was written by an east Kentucky native, T. L Haddix, a Perry County native who now calls London home. Tabatha has become a dear, personal friend and I have written her up before in this column. But that was well before she completed her latest offering, “Pine Cone Trail”.

Left with no choice but to flee her Harlan County home, Abigail Muncy arrives on the stagecoach in London in the spring of 1872, weary and not hoping to find anything more than a quiet place to rest her head for a few nights before moving on. Instead, she’s charmed by the town and its residents. Despite her wariness, she decides to stay in London and try to rebuild what she’s lost. This is a story of survival from abuse in a historical setting that southeastern Kentucky history buffs will find fascinating.

I’m not sure how many books this makes in her Firefly Hollow series, at least 15 or 16, and I don’t have time to find out before I hit a deadline, but this is her best effort to date, with the possible exception of “Firefly Hollow”, the title that started all.

Best of all, “Pine Cone Trail” is just 99 cents for a short time only for Amazon Kindle readers. If you don’t have a Kindle, you can turn any smart phone or tablet into one by downloading the free Kindle app. I will almost guarantee that if you read this one, you will go back and pay full price for “Firefly Hollow” and then get as hooked as I am. I will be surprised if “Pine Cone Trail” doesn’t hit the tops of some bestseller lists. “Firefly Hollow” should have been there years ago.

If you want a paper copy, simply search Barnes and Noble. In the meantime, I’m going to try to get Tabatha’s husband, Glendon, to make me a set of prints of all her book covers because they are truly works of art.

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