Former science teacher at Marietta Public Schools, Charles Lemar Brown, has just released his first novel. “The Road to Nowhere” was published on December 1, 2022, by Broken L. Press and is available on Amazon in both Kindle and print editions.

“The Road to Nowhere” is the story of a young man whose grandfather is willing to go to great lengths to keep his grandson from making a horrible mistake with his life. By being forced to act as a chauffeur for his grandparents on a long and winding road trip from Oklahoma to the West Coast, Trey Tucker finds out there’s nothing that his granddad Will won’t do to make sure that those he loves have a chance to be truly happy.

Since the book’s debut, it has been racking up five-star reviews, and has been on Amazon’s Kindle Top 100 New Releases in American Contemporary Fiction, reaching number three at one point and remaining in the top ten for the entirety of December. As of this writing, the book was at number seven on the list.

Scratching the surface, it may seem to be a dichotomy that a high school biology teacher would be a successful writer of contemporary fiction, but in this case, it’s more like the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.

Brown’s parents are both successful authors. His mother, Carolyn Brown, who has been writing for 49 years, is the New York Times best-selling author of 130 novels. For someone who began her career writing a weekly column at “The Davis Times,” she’s pretty famous. Like, people-stand-in-line-to-get-her-autograph famous.

His father Charles, a retired English teacher, has been at it for 45 years and has published 11 novels during the past eight years. Between the two of them, Miss Carolyn and Mr. Charles have written enough words to fill a school bus. So, really, is it such a stretch that their son would try his hand as a novelist? I think not.

Brown’s path to writing hasn’t been quite as long, but it was a smidge more winding. He spent three years in the Air Force, then worked in a dairy, as a police officer, and in a post office before heading to college for a Science Ed degree and then spending fourteen years teaching middle and high school science at Marietta.

“The first thing I ever wrote was a short story in my junior Creative Writing class that was published in an anthology,” Brown said. “I think it’s in a box somewhere at Mom and Dad’s. Then I started writing poetry while I was in the Air Force and had some of those published.”

“I think it was in 1991 or ‘92 that I started my first novel, but that one was never published. It’s running around in that big ol’ unfinished novel cloud in the sky, along with the next two I started.”

In early 2019, Brown started writing again, his third novel. This one he finished in January. It is yet to be published but is in the works. Brown finished “The Road to Nowhere” in January 2021 and retired from teaching in May 2021. He’s still writing but says he doesn’t consider himself a fulltime writer.

“I have so many irons in the fire, I don’t think I do anything fulltime,” he joked. “Between photography, traveling, writing, and grandkids, I figure I spend about half my time writing.”

Brown has stayed in touch with his former colleagues and students at Marietta. He returned to Marietta High School on January 10 for a short visit/book signing with faculty and students.

On Saturday, February 4, the Love County Library will host a public book signing from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.