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Best Local Authors In Detroit

A deeply ingrained culture of literacy is the key to forming skills for success in a modern society. Here are some suggestions for a healthy, happy literate lifestyle, featuring local Detroit authors.
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R. C. Ryan (The Pen Name of Ruth Ryan Langan)

R. C. Ryan will be celebrating the publication of her 100th novel in 2014, which is currently under contract by Grand Central Publishing's Forever imprint. Her latest release is "Jake." This final book in New York Times best-selling author Ryan's Wyoming Sky trilogy pits Jake Conway, rugged veterinarian in the town of Paintbrush, Wyoming, against Meg Stanford, a driven, successful attorney in D.C. who hopes to remain only long enough to dispose of her long-estranged father's ranch. A series of midnight break-ins sends Meg into the arms of her neighbor, Jake. As their passion grows, the attacks grow bolder. Even if Jake can keep Meg safe, will he ultimately lose her to the siren song of her career in the big city?

Related: 5 Must-Read Books By Detroit Authors

Patti Radakovich

Patti Radakovich is a children's book and health food author living in Southeast Michigan. Her first book, "Fireball: The Christmas Kitty," follows the story of Fireball, a cat abandoned by his family who ends up in a local shelter, and Penny, a young girl that wants a kitten of her very own but must volunteer at the shelter first before her parents will let her adopt a cat. The story teaches children about responsibility, as well as the joys and work involved in having a pet. It is also a story about hope despite the reality of the pet overpopulation problem. Her second book, "The Easter Chinchilla," is a tale about a chinchilla who is different from the others and tries to search for his purpose in life to find out what makes him special. The story teaches children about self-esteem and touches on the subject of bullying.

Jonathan B. Wright

"Who's Behind the Fairy Doors?" was a finalist in the National Best Books Awards' "Children's Novelty and Gift Books" category in 2007; it also won the Next Generation Indie Books Award in 2008. Jonathan was often asked if he has ever seen a fairy. Sadly, to the best of his recollection, he had not. "Many children have claimed to have seen fairies. Many of these children (and a few adults) have actually drawn images of their sightings in my journal/guestbooks. I used their ability to see combined with my ability to illustrate to create the book," says Wright. Inside, one finds copies of the original illustrations and, conversely, Jonathan's interpretations and commentary, which should give a clearer vision of the "likenesses of some of the urban-fairies." Included in the collection are the Rock Fairy, the Paper Fairy, the Scissor-Wing Fairy, the Great Scot Fairy, an Owl-Eyed Fairy and many more. The book is clever and fun for all ages.

Bruce Jenvey

Jenvey writes the Cabbottown Witch Novels, a completely different take on modern-day witchcraft from the current rush of magic words, pointy hats and boy wizards. It also takes a very different look at what role this "science" plays in the lives of its characters, and its role in modern religion. "Angela's Coven" (2013 EPIC Award Winner) is the story of a rock star who sold his soul to Satan in his youth, and now that he is old and dying, wants to renege on his his contract. "The Great Northern Coven" has a similar plot to "Oz, The Great and Powerful." In this tale, a bush pilot drifts into a small town in Alaska, and the local Inuit Indians believe he is the central figure in an ancient prophecy.

Related: Best Books About Detroit

Debra Darvick

"I Love Jewish Faces" is a children's picture book which celebrates, in captivating rhyme, today's Jewish diversity. It promotes the message that a Jewish face is any face -- African American, Asian, Guatemalan, Caucasian, blonde and blue-eyed, brunette and dark-eyed and more. "This Jewish Life: Stories of Discovery, Connection and Joy" is an adult non-fiction second edition published by Read the Spirit Books. It is a collection of 54 first-person accounts of transformative Jewish experiences. The book is one of a select few books that are part of the Jewish Community Religion Council's library given to Detroit-area churches and mosques.

WL Bush

WL Bush won The Barrett Award for his first short story, "The Secret of The God's Eye Spider" in 1998. After being a freelance journalist in South Africa for two years, WL Bush returned to the USA and published "Kill Switch." This is a novel juxtaposing a 40-year chronology of life in Detroit beginning in the 1960s, through the drug epidemic of the 80s and the economic selfishness of the 90s, with the plight of Sub-Saharan Africa in the 2000s – seen as the world's Petri dish and tax write-off for corporations with stockpiles of adulterated medication. Bush followed that up with the novel "Shadows in the Sunlight," which continued to show the power, exploitation and data mining of mega-corporation Global Media, while featuring Joe Bosco and the lives he touched with his guru-like persuasiveness. Bush's latest novel, "Hanna Valentine," is a modern re-telling of the love and artistic bond between Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera. It deals with a penniless Detroit writer's whirlwind love affair with a fourth-degree burn survivor millionaire and begs the question, "Is beauty more than skin deep?"  

Romero Anton Montalban-Anderssen is the winner of the 2009 first prize in journalism from the Detroit Working Writers Organization. He has seasonal residency in Detroit Michigan, The Italian Riviera, and Honolulu Hawaii. His work can be found at

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