Izabella Aquino

Author and Teacher at Seminole High School, Richardson McGhee, is pictured here holding one of her books. The book she holds now is her first publish, titled “A Harlet’s Heart.”

Phoebe Sousa, Reporter

Walking down the halls, did you ever think that one of our teachers is a bestselling author? From lecturing a few thousand students, to selling a few hundred novels, Brenda Richardson-McGhee has become a well-known writer within Seminole county. Brenda Richardson-McGhee is the author of The Harlot’s Heart, which happens to be the first book in the series she wrote during quarantine. 

Richardson-Mcghee states that “It all started over the summer of 2020, I woke up in the middle of the night and had the whole book in my head. After that, I started typing for six weeks straight. I just typed almost every day, all day long.”  

Ever since she was a teenager, she would write all sorts of short stories and poems. Then after teaching for over 37 years her passion for writing only grew. English, especially literature, is her favorite subject to teach. highly involved at Riverwalk Church of God, where she grew up with redback hymnals and adolescence camps. She claims that she cannot remember a time when she did not have a church family, as she is the fourth generation to be involved in her church’s music, theater, and ladies ministry. For a Christian-romance novelist focusing on the theme of rebirth, Brenda Richardson- McGhee creates a very genuine atmosphere within her narratives. Exhibiting the world we live in; while artfully composing theological truths. Brenda Richardson-McGhee knew she wanted part of her second novel, a prequel to her first book “A Harlot’s Heart,” to take place in a tiny village in Alabama. Richardson-McGhee opted to place part of her work, “A Harlot’s Hope,” in Phil Campbell after a town in Alabama where her friend grew up.

I knew I wanted a community with less than 1,000 people,” Richardson-McGhee explained. 

Although Richardson-McGhee had never visited Phil Campbell at the time she wrote the novel, she had mentioned certain things that happened in the story which happened to be true about the town. Weeks after her book was published, she traveled to the locations her books had taken place, such as the village of Phil Campbell.

 “One of the character’s father is a preacher, and so we had to come to take a picture in front of the church where he would have attended,” Richardson-McGhee explained, as she paid a visit to the Restoration Church, among other places. 

When she visited Phil Campbell, Richardson-McGhee was amazed to discover how close the town was to what she portrayed in the novel.

“So much of it is exactly how I envisioned it,” Richardson-McGhee added. 

As a mother of six and a granny to one, McGhee dedicates her time to both her children and students. 

“Being a teacher for so long and just knowing people, as well as the experiences throughout my life, I just used those things to help me with the writing,” Richardson-McGhee said. 

With the many obstacles she encounters along the way, just like the characters in her novels, Mcghee is her very own superhero. “Lithia is the main character from book one, and you see her throughout the other books too. She relates to me because she grew up in a very conservative home, and she was the strawberry blonde girl who was everyone’s friend,” Richardson-McGhee mentioned. 

Facing the challenges of teaching the next generation every day of the week, McGhee is an inspiration to many. 

Richardson-McGhee also explains that “This is a narrative about all of the challenges individuals encountered and how they overcame them,”. 

She claims that the book covers more difficult themes, such as human trafficking and abuse, which she believes are real-life concerns that must be addressed.

 “My advice to everybody is to stop thinking about those aspects and be willing to hug or love that person because you don’t know how that person made it into that situation. For I hope people understand that no matter what you have gone through, God still loves you,” Richardson-McGhee said. 

Brenda Richardson-McGhee is not a household name — but her best-sellers make her readers remember her. After publishing her second book, Brenda continues the series with a third book, A Harlot’s Hero, along with a fourth with hopes to reach her readers and touch their hearts.