Sunday, May 1, 2016

'Louisiana Saves the Library' a charming tale

            Louisiana is a bit of a culture shock for Minnesota native Louisiana Richardson, even if she does share the same name. After a tough divorce Louise — as she prefers to be called since Louisiana only sounds exotic outside the state — moves her two small children to Saint Jude, Louisiana, for a teaching position at the fictional Louisiana A&M. But budget cuts arrive and Louisiana is soon out of a job and in dire straights. She takes a library position in nearby Alligator Bayou Parish and sets out, along with another out-of-work, city-raised colleague, to rejuvenate the library in “Louisiana Saves the Library” by Emily Beck Cogburn. It’s a charming story about a self-conscious librarian trying to juggle work and single motherhood, modernizing a library while fighting city hall and attempting a second chance at love with a strawberry farmer in a rural Louisiana parish. Like the main character, Cogburn hails from Minnesota but now lives in Baton Rouge where she worked at The Advocate for many years. She holds a master’s degree in library and information science from LSU.
            Cogburn will sign “Louisiana Saves the Library” at 1 p.m. Saturday at the main branch of the East Baton Rouge Parish Library.

New releases
Stephanie Fournet, academic dean and director of college counseling at Ascension Episcopal School, takes to the Saint Streets of Lafayette in her fourth romance, “Leave a Mark,” published by Blue Tulip Publishing.
“The Saint Streets inspire me because the area is such a rich mix of the best of Lafayette: musicians and artists, doctors, professors and students,” Fournet said in a press release. “When I jog or ride my bike through the streets, the stories just come to life.”
            “Leave a Mark” opens in the University Medical Center’s ER and continues the tale of Dr. Lee Hawthorne from Fournet’s last book, “Butterfly Ginger.” The book is available as an ebook on Kindle, Nook, iBooks and Smashwords and in print on Amazon.com.
Youngsville author Joan T. Broussard has published “The Innkeeper’s Wife,” following Gertrude, the wife of a Bethlehem innkeeper, who prays for a friend and receives a young couple at the door, one of which is pregnant with Jesus. The book is available at Crossroads Bookstore in Lafayette and online at Barnes & Noble and Amazon after Tuesday. 
Harvey author Frank Borne completes his Mardi Gras trilogy with “Forever Her Captain,” the sequel to “The Captain of Her Heart” and the first book in the series, “The Captain and the Queen.” All three are available on Amazon.com.

Book events
Talk about a rocking book signing! Todd Mouton of Lafayette signs “Way Down in Louisiana” at 10 p.m. today with performances by Sonny Landreth, Tab Benoit and Jonathon Boogie Long at Mid City Lanes’ Rock’n’Bowl in New Orleans.
Alys Arden, author of “Casquette Girls,” will speak about her book following the high school awards ceremony for the Writes of Spring contest at 7 p.m. Thursday at the Lafayette Main Library.
Free Comic Book Day is Saturday and Acadiana Comics & Collectibles will offer a free comic to the first 50 attendees from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at South Regional Branch Library. You can also swap your old comics with other attendees.
Emily Cogburn will sign “Louisiana Saves the Library” at 1 p.m. Saturday at the main branch of the East Baton Rouge Parish Library.
Rosemary Smith signs her children’s and young adult books from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at the Thensted Center in Grand Coteau. Smith is the author of “Three Wishes for Maddy,” “Woody Gets Dunked” and “No Earthly Boundaries.” 
Doug Villien will sign copies of “Forgotten Baton Rouge” from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Saturday at Barnes & Noble Perkins Rowe in Baton Rouge.

Cheré Coen is the author of “Forest Hill, Louisiana: A Bloom Town History,” “Haunted Lafayette, Louisiana” and “Exploring Cajun Country.” She writes Louisiana romances under the pen name of Cherie Claire. Write her at cherecoen@gmail.com.