It’s summertime and what a great season to kick back and enjoy a good book. Here are a few fiction suggestions of books by Louisiana authors.
Andre Dubus III, author of “House of Sand and Fog” and “The Garden of Last Days,” returns with “Dirty Love,” linked novellas in which characters walk out the back door of one story and into the next. Dubus’s writing has received many honors, including a Guggenheim Fellowship, a National Magazine Award, and two Pushcart Prizes. He will sign copies of his new novel at 6 p.m. Thursday at Octavia Books in New Orleans.
On a sidenote, The University of Mississippi Press has just published “Conservations with Andre Dubus,” a collection of interviews that begin with Dubus’ career and continues through his final interview before his death in 1999. A native of Lake Charles and father to Andre Dubus III, Andre Dubus published seven collections of short stories, two collections of essays, two collections of previously published stories, two novels and a novella. The book is edited by Olivia Carr Edenfield, associate professor at Georgia Southern University.
New York Times bestselling author Karen White, who set a previous book on the Mississippi Coast (“The Beach Trees”) and some novels in Louisiana, offers a story of three generation in the Mississippi Delta with “A Long Time Gone.” She will be signing copies of her books at 5:30 p.m. June 18 at Turnrow Books in Greenwood, Miss.; at 5 p.m. June 19 at Lemuria Books in Jackson, Miss.; and at 6 p.m. June 20 at Octavia Books in New Orleans.
Chosen by one of Kirkus Reviews’ Best of 2013, Mark LaFlaur’s “Elysian Fields” takes readers through 1999 New Orleans as aspiring poet Simpson Weems dreams of moving to San Francisco only to be curtailed by a demanding family, mostly his emotionally unstable brother, Bartholomew. A Louisiana native LaFlaur now works as a writer and editor in New York City and blogs at Levees, Now War.
Amy Conner of New Orleans has published her first novel, “a story of love and courage, the powerful impact of friendship, and the small acts that can anchor a life — or, with a little luck, steer it in the right direction at last” in “The Right Thing.”
Gregory Alexander creates a Catholic priest who should never have joined the church but an unusual birthmark gave his Italian grandmother reason for pushing him in that direction in “The Holy Mark: The Tragedy of a Fallen Priest.” When his jealous uncle threatens to destroy him, Father Tony becomes determined to outwit both his uncle and the church. For more information, visit Theholymark.com.
The Writers Guild of Acadiana will host a multi-author signing from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at J&R Educational Supplies in Lafayette.
The authors are:
John Francois, author of historical novels “The March,” “Cajun Fire,” “Cajun Knights,” “Carrier-of-Bones” and “Pontiac;”
Melissa Abraham, author of the book of poetry, “A Prism of Thought;”
Sudie Landry, author of “Listen To the Children;”
Mel LeCompte, author of the children’s book, “The Ice Cream Cow” plus “Sharpened Iron;”
Jeanette Poole, author of a family cookbook and who will sell copies of the Writers’ Guild cookbook;
Rosemary Smith, author of the children’s books, “Lizzie Walks On the Wild Side” and “Woody Gets Ducked;”
Dennis Ward, author of “Mademoisell Gigi;”
Kesha Turner, author of several novels, the latest being “A;”
Robert Boese, author of the Casey Cook novels;
Eleven-year-old Loren Bellow who is author of several books; and
Dannille Kazemi, author of several young adult novels, including her latest, “Fallen Ashes,” book 21 in the Dragon’s Fire series.
Scott Cowen launches his new book, “The Inevitable City: The Resurgence of NewOrleans and the Future of Urban America” at 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Jewish Community Center in New Orleans. Cowen is the outgoing Tulane University President, a man New Orleans CityBusiness called one of the 30 “Driving Forces” in New Orleans in the last 30 years.
And I’ll be leading the Acadiana Wordlab from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at the Acadiana Center for the Arts. My topic is “Get Your Mojo Working!,” where participants will not only make fun gris gris bags but really think about where inspiration comes from and how to focus on what you want from your writing. We’ll write, of course!
Cheré Coen is the author of “Haunted Lafayette, Louisiana” and “Exploring Cajun Country: A Historic Guide to Acadiana,” both from The History Press, and co-author of “Magic’s in the Bag: Creating Spellbinding Gris Gris Bags and Sachets.” She teaches writing at UL-Lafayette’s Continuing Education. Write her at email@example.com.