We’ve all heard about the value of shopping local, but what about reading local? Did you know that your neighbor might be a published author? Independent bookstores like Leesburg’s Birch Tree Bookstore partner with local authors by holding signing soirees like the one this photo depicts this Spring. The rise of digital publishing platforms and the resurgence of independent bookstores has given a new, far more diverse set of authors the opportunity to be read and heard. So, consider supporting a local author or bookstore this summer. You may discover that one of your neighbors writes thrillers, science fiction, history, or literature. The following works by Loudoun County authors span reading for all ages and are a small sample of local writing talent.
The award-winning Clifford’s War books are a set of action-packed crime novels by J. Denison Reed, a former Army network engineer who lives in Ashburn. Reed pivoted from hiding poems and short stories in work logs and trouble tickets to amuse his fellow Soldiers, to writing longer, more complex narratives that culminated in his series debut. Synopsis: Join private investigator and Army veteran Clifford Dee as he navigates the mafia, the U.S. government, the entertainment industry, and the illicit global weapons market. Dee must fight for survival—and his sanity—while trying to maintain his loyalty to both country and compatriot.Fans of action thrillers and crime suspense like the TV series “Burn Notice” are sure to enjoy these mile-to-minute stories of government conspiracy, car chases, lethal encounters, and humor. jdenisonreed.com
Bunny Bart Needs a Heart is a touching tale by Jill Solis, a Blue Ridge Mountains resident and LCPS elementary school employee who struggled to find children’s books that would reinforce the lessons she was trying to teach students. The result: a book that subtly weaves early learning concepts like shapes, colors, and directional words into a story about unconditional love. Synopsis: Bunny Bart needs to find a special heart for his mother’s birthday. Will he find the perfect heart in the meadow, the mountains, the city, or the night sky? Bunny Bart Needs a Heart is a warming tale reminding us that sometimes we don’t need to look far and wide for the most special gifts of all.jillsolis.com
The Wayward Target is the third novel in Susan Ouellette’s exhilarating “Wayward Spy” series. A former CIA analyst, Soviet specialist, and current Hamilton resident, Ouellette combines imagination with her background to create stunning, realistic spy thrillers. Synopsis: After hunting down the terrorist who killed her fiancé, CIA analyst Maggie Jenkins finds herself with a price on her head. Despite this threat, Maggie jumps into action to bring down the terrorist network. When a shadowy Russian operative presents Maggie with an impossible choice, she must decide between the man she loves and the man who supported her during her darkest days. "Susan Ouellette has written a well-crafted page-turner that benefits not only from her imagination and way with words—but from her experience." Dr. Mark Lowenthal, Former CIA Assistant Director. susanouellette.com
Midgard is the award-winning debut novel by Jeanne Hull Godfroy, an Army veteran, historian, and political scientist from Hamilton. In telling this story, Godfroy strives to entertain her readers while subtly educating them about the perils of environmental abuse.Synopsis: It is the mid-22nd century, the Earth is dying, and humankind is out of time. The only hope is the Human Resiliency Program—a conglomeration of last-ditch efforts to preserve human life. Sam Richmond is one of its rising stars until those close to him disappear, his headquarters is attacked, and he learns nothing is as it seems. "An imaginative, frightening glimpse of humankind’s future. Jeanne Hull Godfroy’s fictional world is as uncomfortable as it is engaging and important to read."– Caleb S. Cage, author of “Desert Mementos” be-stirred.com