PRINCETON — It was almost 35 years ago that Jim Dossett and his wife, Brenda, first began visiting Princeton and Bureau County.
“I visited relatives here and was enamored with the area and the people from the first time I laid eyes on the place. We’ve considered moving here many times but never got around to it,” said Dossett, who moved to Tennessee (the place where he was born) in 1997, to learn more about his family and his heritage.
“I wrote for a small newspaper in a rural community there, and I learned a lot; I learned that my given name was Bobby Ray and that my biological father was a bandit, who escaped from jails and prisons seven times, two times with the help of my biological mother and his mother,” Dossett said.
According to Dossett, that scenario was the impetus for writing the mostly fictional book, "Finding Bobby Ray" which is acclaimed in portions of East Tennessee and elsewhere. His love affair with Princeton and the surrounding area provided the momentum for writing his second book, "Starvin’ Dog and the Guardians."
“The entire book does not take place in a place like Princeton, but I believe the most important part does,” he said. Readers of the book will notice Princeton in some descriptions of the town, which is named New Kingdom.
“I’ve dedicated the book to a friend of mine, Max Coville, who has lived in the area for 86 years,” said Dossett.
Dossett will be available to sell and sign copies of the book during Homestead Festival, Sept. 12-13.
In the meantime, "Finding Bobby Ray" and "Starvin’ Dog and the Guardians" may be purchased on Amazon.com and BarnesandNoble.com.
“I’m looking forward to talking to folks at the festival; maybe I’ll see some old acquaintances ... I don’t know; it’s been a long time,” he said.