It's National Read A Book Day! Time to put down the Netflix and pick up a book and enjoy the majesty of the written word. A few authors have come from right here in the Tri-States area, so make sure you check out them, first.

1 - Mark Twain

CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform

Because of course I'm going to start with him. He's the most famous American author ever. It goes Twain, John Steinbeck, then R.L. Stine, and like... Jackie Collins probably. We have 18 festivals about him per year, do I really need to list his books? Tom Sawyer. Huck Finn. A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court, The Prince & The Pauper, Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle... need I go on? Though there is some dispute on Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle. That may have been William Shakespeare, we've got our research staff looking into it.

2 - Jean Rabe

Tor Publishing

Jean Rabe, the one time Quincy-Herald Whig bureau chief has carved out a fine career for herself in the realm of sci-fi and fantasy literature, having written numerous novels in the genres, including the Dragonlance series, based on the Dungeons & Dragons role playing game, and stories set in the Star Wars extended universe.

3 - Rupert Hughes

Bibliofinds via Amazon

While his nephew, Howard, certainly eclipsed him in popularity and notoriety, Rupert Hughes grew up in Keokuk and made a name for himself as a historian and author, writing one of the foremost volumes on George Washington, which can be purchased here.

4 - Ron Powers

Bantam Publishing

Ron Powers started his career as a journalist, winning both a Pulitzer and an Emmy through his career, before turning to novels and non-fiction in the 80s. His books have covered television, sports, even his hometown hero Mark Twain (SEE! He's so famous, even other writers on this list write about him!). He co-authored the book Flags of Our Fathers about the raising of the flag at Iwo Jima, which was turned into an Oscar nominated film of the same name by Clint Eastwood in 2006.

5 - James B. Stewart


James B. Stewart made the law his profession, and fell into legal journalism and non-fiction writing as a side career. The Quincy native has written about Michael Eisner's tenure at the Walt Disney Company, insider looks at powerful law firms, and won a Pulitzer for a series of articles at the Wall Street Journal about insider trading, which were the basis for his best selling book Den of Thieves.

You can find out about these books and more at the Quincy Public Library, the Hannibal Public Library, and the Keokuk Public Library.