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About Award Winning Author John Warley

John Warley

"Writing thrillers--the most fun you can have without wearing a helmet."

John Warley is an award-winning author, a dedicated dad, and a retired lawyer, having practiced both criminal law as a prosecutor and civil law as a litigator for over forty years. A South Carolinian by birth, he grew up largely in Yorktown, Virginia. After accepting a football scholarship to The Citadel, from which he graduated in 1967, he took his law degree from the University of Virginia School of Law in 1970.

He is the award-winning author of five published novels and one non-fiction history of his undergraduate alma mater (Stand Forever, Yielding Never; The Citadel in the 21st Century). Murder Mystery Thriller Jury of One is his sixth novel. 

After a favorable response to his first novel, Bethesda’s Child, he took a two year sabbatical in Mexico to write A Southern Girl. Mexico also presented him with the chance to teach, an experience he treasures.  Tecnológico de Monterrey, often called the “MIT of Mexico,” offered him a professorship teaching bilingual juniors and seniors U.S. Business Law.

In 2005 he moved from Virginia to Beaufort, South Carolina, with his late wife Barbara. He has participated in the University of South Carolina Beaufort’s OLLI program (Osher Lifelong Learning Institute) as a popular lecturer. During covid, when in-person lectures ceased, he recorded from home a series of talks on Beaufort history during Reconstruction. USCB made those talks available on-line, where they have been viewed thousands of times. In 2016, the Beaufort History Museum hired him to write the Reconstruction narrative that now informs visitors to the National Park Service’s Reconstruction Era National Historical Park. He continues to serve the Beaufort History Museum, currently as vice-president. He is also an active supporter of the Pat Conroy Literary Center. Pat was his classmate at The Citadel, a baseball teammate there, and his dear friend until his death in 2016. Pat’s praise for A Southern Girl, “I wish I’d written this book,” has sold more than a few copies.

“John Warley’s marvelous novel A Southern Girl is the best book I’ve ever read about Charleston’s mysterious and glittering high society. Its affirmation of the enduring power of parental love vying against that enigmatic realm is reverential and stunningly original, as stylish as a novel by John Irving and as tightly written as one by John Grisham. I wish I’d written this book.”


—Pat Conroy, author of The Prince of Tides,  The Great Santini,

The Lords of Discipline, South Abroad, and others

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