New author Jim Owens says he grew up in the fast lane, and now he has a book that will tell all about it.
He recently published “The Legend of the Dysartsville Plymouth,” which is based on true events and spotlights the times he experienced growing up, including street drag racing in the Dysartsville area.
A book-signing event for this new work will be held from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 12 at the McDowell County Public Library in Marion.
Owens, 70, who is from Rutherfordton and owns the Top Dog Fast Foods restaurant in Spindale, says the title of the book was inspired by a locally famous car during those times.
“I’ve been wanting to do it since I was about 50,” Owens said. “I said somebody ought to write a book about the drag racing days and the way it was in the ’60s. We used to race right there and the Dysartsville Plymouth used to race everywhere up there. It was known for hauling ‘white lightning.’ After it would make its moonlight runs on Saturday, it would come down and street drag race.”
According to the book’s description on Owens’ website, topdogproduction.com, the book describes growing up as a baby boomer in the 1950s, living on a farm, witnessing the growing pains of post-World War II America and the turbulence of the Vietnam War and the consequences of that conflict for American society.
“This book has romance and adventure, from cruising around town to actual accounts of the things that happened during that era that have diminished over time — sock hops, car hops, the county fair, the beginning of rock n’ roll from Elvis to the British Invasion, to men landing on the moon, to America’s march to the new drumbeat for freedom and equality for all, and the street drag racing scene of teenage America,” the description says.
Owens says the book focuses especially on what he calls the magical times of the late 1960s. His first-hand experience with the time period qualified him to write his new book, he says on his website.
“True events of my exciting life, what I call ‘growing up in the fast lane,’ with adventure, romance and street drag racing, qualifies me to tell the story to people who actually experienced those times as I did and to new generations about those magical times in the 1960s,” he says.
“Even though time has marched along and big changes have come for me and America, I can never forget growing up barefoot with the dirt between my toes, the smell of cotton candy at the county fair, fried chicken on Sunday, homemade ice cream or cutting into a cold watermelon with the family. I’m a lifelong native of the county I was born in. These are the things that made me who I am today, and the reason I wish to share them.”
“The Legend of the Dysartsville Plymouth” currently is on sale at Owens’ restaurant at 351 Oakland Road in Spindale. The book also is available on the topdogproduction.com website in hardback, paperback and e-book. Amazon also is selling hardbacks and softbacks and the book is available on Kindle.
Justin Epley can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 828-432-8943.