Advice for finding local writers

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Aynsleigh Penland

Deep in thought, FVHS Junior, Anna-Grace Medlin reads The Wrath and the Dawn by Renée Ahdieh. (Photo by Aynsleigh Penland)

Aynsleigh Penland, Arts & Entertainment Editor

Growing up in North Carolina I had always been told of the film side of our state. 

I know that movies such as A Walk To Remember and Dirty Dancing were filmed in Wilmington and parts of Iron Man 3 were filmed at SAS in Cary, but I had never been told about authors that were from here because I have always loved the idea of talking about my favorite books with the people that created them but they live so far away. 

As I was doing my research, I found out that two of the biggest books’ authors on BookTok right now live in North Carolina. 

The book Anna and the French Kiss by Stephine Perkins is about when a teenager named Anna has to move from her hometown in Atlanta, Georgia to Paris for school. “The idea arrived in a dream—a beautiful boy with a French name and an English accent, sitting on the steps of the Panthéon—and it was impossible to resist. Or, more accurately, the boy was impossible to resist,” Perkins explained on her website FAQ. I found out that Perkins actually lives in our picturesque, North Carolina mountains with her husband.

Another popular series right now, The Wrath and the Dawn by Renée Ahdieh, is a retelling of 1001 Nights. 1001 Nights is a collection of middle eastern folk tales. Ahdieh loves to experience other cultures and this can clearly be seen through her work. “The first is my husband’s family. They’re Persian, and the story of Scheherazade is actually Persian in origin. My in-laws have beautiful pieces of art and tapestry all throughout their home, and I always wanted to write a story to reflect the beauty of their culture and the richness of its history,” explained Ahdieh in an interview with Books Inc. The treacherous tale is about the Caliph of Khorasan who marries a new bride every day and has her killed by dawn.

Other North Carolina Authors:

  • Jaki Shelton Green
  • Nicholas Sparks
  • Frances O’Roak Dowell
  • Sarah Dessen
  • Robert Beatty
  • Jerry Bledsoe