Our mountains. Our stories.

Our books

Two Hoots Press is proud to reintroduce the Western North Carolina non-fiction classic, Roaming the Mountains with John Parris. We have rescued this beloved collection of oral history from obscurity and put it back into print for the first time in decades. The flagship title in our Heritage Edition series includes the full original text freshly packaged in an updated cover to honor its historical and regional appeal. Retrace the roots of our storied mountains with one of North Carolina's greatest storytellers and folklorists.



PRAISE FOR Roaming the Mountains with John Parris

“There is no place like my childhood home, and I can truly appreciate the writings of John Parris, who told me about the poetry and beauty of our mountains . . . Thank God his writings have been preserved and may they touch your heart as they have touched mine, throughout the years.” —Nick Searcy, actor and Sylva, NC native (Justified, Castaway, Fried Green Tomatoes, Prince of Tides)

" For more than forty years, John Parris was the bard of bygone times, roaming our mountains from Murphy to Mt. Mitchell, talking to the weathersharps, bonifaces, balladeers and oldtimers of a vanishing past. Parris was a front-page fixture for the Asheville Citizen-Times for decades. For many readers, it wasn’t October in the hills until Parris published his annual autumnal poetry. The return of his classic “Roaming the Mountains” is a welcome addition to the region's required reading.."  Dale Neal, writer for Asheville Citizen-Times and author of Cow Across America and The Half-Life of Home.

"Roaming the Mountains with John Parris is not so much about the mountains as it is about the people who live here - back in the coves on the dirt roads. Many of them can trace their mountain roots back hundreds of years. John was at home with these folks because John was one of us. He sat on front porches; scratched behind the ears of the family hound. He ate corn pone baked in a wood stove. He knew that to really understand, you have to do some roamin'. John Parris did that exceedingly well." Bob Caldwell, retired WLOS-TV broadcaster

Our inspiration...

Two Hoots Press founders, Marty and Amy Cherrix, were flipping through one of their favorite old books. It was tattered, faded, and torn. At least three generations of the mother and daughter's family had been sharing its stories for as far back as either of them could remember. The book was Roaming the Mountains with John Parris.

When an exhaustive Internet search for a new copy revealed that the book was out of print they realized it was in danger of being forgotten - and along with it, a treasure trove of Western North Carolina history and folklore by one of our greatest storytellers.

Within the hour Two Hoots Press was born. 

With a commitment to preserving the cultural heritage of Western North Carolina, Two Hoots Press publishes original stories and repackages regional classics to ensure the stories of mountain people remain part of our cultural conversation.

Our authors

John Parris

 (photo credit:  Asheville Citizen-Times )

 (photo credit: Asheville Citizen-Times)

"The bard of bygone times". . .

John Parris was a Sylva, North Carolina native. He was also a true newspaper man from the tender age of 13 when he began writing for the local weekly, The Jackson County Journal, and as a correspondent for The Asheville Citizen-Times. In 1936 he moved to New York and became a bylined feature writer, then was sent by the United Press to London in 1941 where he covered the diplomatic run until 1944. He took a brief time out from his work in London to cover the North African invasion where he landed with the GIs at Arzew. Shortly thereafter he joined the Associated Press in London, holding the post of diplomatic correspondent until 1946 when AP transferred him New York to cover the United Nations. For his work with the Belgian underground he was decorated with the order of Chevalier of the Order of Leopold II.

By 1947, Parris was ready to return to his beloved mountains in Sylva, NC, devoting the rest of his life to creative writing. In 1951, he became director of public relations of the Cherokee Historical Association and in February, 1955, began his beloved “Roaming the Mountains” column for The Asheville Citizen and the The Citizen-Times.

Parris’ writing and his subsequent collection of books based on his newspaper column "Roaming The Mountains with John Parris," is one of the last remaining true testaments to old newspaper style reporting. Parris traveled the mountains, detailing the life, culture and history of Western North Carolina from old timers who shared with Parris their first hand experience of what life was like for early settlers. He reminds us we are stewards of these mountains, the writers of their history, and above all, the keepers of their many stories. 


Children's Books

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Cate's Magic Garden

When Cate the caterpillar discovers a dried-up garden and the grumpy critters who call it home, it's up to her to show Davey Dung Beetle, Pete Potato Bug, and Walter Worm how to make it bloom. Can Cate teach them to use the magic of friendship and the power of positive thinking to bring their garden back to life?

A heartwarming and lavishly illustrated picture book to remind young readers that even in the darkest of times, "words change worlds."

Two Hoots Press is proud to have published this book in cooperation with Childhelp, a national non-profit organization dedicated to the prevention and treatment of child abuse.





Our team

Marty Keener Cherrix, Publisher

Marty Keener Cherrix, Publisher



Marty Keener Cherrix is a Western North Carolina native who grew up roaming the mountains behind her family's Hoot Owl Farm in Haywood County. She excavated ground hog holes, searched for snake skins, and took up with box turtles, all while her grandfather told her stories about the "old ways." 
A lifelong lover of books as well as a devoted reader and writer, Marty earned a degree in Communications from UNC-Asheville. Still chasing her love of stories, she began working in film and television as a location casting director, helping bring tales to life on the big and the small screen. Marty has worked on award winning features such as "Into the Wild" and "The Cider House Rules", and with acclaimed directors like Robert Redford, Lasse Halstrom and Robert Zemeckis. Most recently she has cast roles for the hit TV series, "The Originals" and "The Vampire Diaries". This summer she also cast the film "Two Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri" which filmed in Sylva, NC. Marty is thrilled that her work as publisher at Two Hoots Press now keeps her close to her mountain home and the stories that started it all. 

Amy Cherrix, Editor

Amy Cherrix was born and raised in quirky Asheville, North Carolina. After earning a master's degree in children's literature from Simmons College in Boston, MA, she joined the editorial team at Houghton Mifflin Books for Young Readers. In addition to her duties at Two Hoots, she is now a freelance editor of children's books. Amy also writes non-fiction books for young readers. Eye of the Storm: NASA, Drones, and the Race to Crack the Hurricane Code publishes in April 2017 as part of Houghton Mifflin's award-winning Scientists in the Field series.

Our locations...

 Brick and mortar locations stock our titles throughout WNC and the list is growing everyday. If you're not in the area, find our books online at, or anywhere fine books are sold. 

Buncombe County

Malaprop's Bookstore & Cafe
55 Haywoood St.
Asheville, NC, 28801


Jackson County

City Lights Bookstore
3 East Jackson St.
Sylva, NC, 28779