AP NEWS

Aiken author Johnny Turner launches new youth Christian fantasy novel

May 16, 2019

The Kingdom of Willowbrook is under attack.

It’s only hope lies with a small group of teens led by an inexperienced map reader who is better at washing dishes than he is at finding temples and tombs.

Can the ultimate weapon for the destruction of evil be found in time, or is all lost?

The answer is in a new book, “Unlikely Hero,” by Aiken author Johnny Turner.

“The main theme of the book is that God’s heroes can be found in the most unlikely places,” Turner said Tuesday during a telephone interview.

The book’s target audience is youth ages 10-14.

Turner will launch the Christian fantasy adventure novel for youth and sign copies from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at Fully Armored Christian Store at 2563 Whiskey Road in the Target shopping center.

Turner said all buyers will receive a gift but those who mention they read about the book launch in the Aiken Standard will receive a “very special gift.”

Turner took inspiration for the book’s setting from EastWind Castle in Trenton. The castle is the site for the annual Dragon Faire, a Renaissance festival.

“The medieval village helped give depth to my writing and was an inspiration to give that real feel to the book,” he said.

In addition to the Fully Armored Christian Store, “Unlikely Hero” is available on Amazon, Kindle and the Apple Blossoms book series Facebook page. A copy also will be in the local authors section at the Aiken County Public Library.

Information about other local book signings is on the Apple Blossoms Facebook page under the events tab.

Turner published his first youth novel, “James and the Medal of Honor,” last year as part of the Apple Blossoms series. He has completed the rough draft for the second book in the series and has found a publisher.

“We’re at the ground stage to see if this is a good partnership,” Turner said. “Probably, from this point forward, I will be publishing not independently but with a publisher, and that’s big for an author like me.”

Turner also is an illustrator. He created the art for “How to Get a Gorilla Out of Your House,” written by Geraldine Yount, for very young readers ages 5 to 8. He’s also illustrating another book that should be out by Christmas.

And since his first book came out, Turner said his writing career has expanded to include speaking engagements to church and youth groups. This fall, he will participate in a writers conference in Columbia.

“The snowball keeps getting a little bit bigger,” Turner said.