Beyond the thrills in the pages of best-selling author Steve Berry's books, area fans might enjoy the thrill of meeting the novelist Saturday when he will speak at the Columbia County Library for the finale of the One Book series.
Library officials started the One Book series to initiate a collective reading program in the community. Since February, Columbia County libraries played host to numerous book discussions and children's story times.
Patrons nominated Berry as the featured author of the 2008 series, and officials chose his The Alexandria Link as the featured novel for discussions.
In addition to The Alexandria Link, Berry wrote The Third Secret, The Templar Legacy, The Romanov Prophecy, The Amber Room and The Venetian Betrayal.
The Alexandria Link revolves around a search for the lost library of Alexandria and how such a find might disrupt the political and religious beliefs of Middle East nations.
Many of Berry's novels explore theological dilemmas and religion's impact on society and politics.
"I don't intentionally set out to have religious overtones in any of the stories, including the three (The Alexandria Link, The Third Secret and The Templar Legacy ) that directly deal with the subject," Berry wrote in an e-mail.
"They are interesting concepts that explore that sometimes blurry and undefined line between faith and religion," he wrote.
A Savannah native, Berry often uses Georgians as main characters in his works.
Though Berry wrote that he rejects the concept of "write what you know" in favor of "write what you love," he still wanted a touch of home in his novels.
"The Georgia connection is just a way for me, in a small way, to pay homage to my home state," Berry wrote.
Berry spent two weeks traveling in Fiji and New Zealand to teach and conduct research for his next book.
Berry wrote that he usually spends 18 months researching his novels and uses about 200 source materials.
"I travel to specific locales in search of specific information, trying to figure out the puzzle or make the action as real as possible," he wrote.
"You don't have to travel to locales, but sometimes you'll find nuggets there that simply aren't in any books."
Berry's travels bring him to the Columbia County Library at 7 p.m. Saturday.
For more information on his lecture or the One Book series, call the library at (706) 863-1946. Admission is free.
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