Sunday, May 7, 2017

Mona Hayden of Louisiana Road Trips magazine reviews 'Amphibians and Reptiles of Louisiana'

A previous column mentioned the new “Amphibians and Reptiles of Louisiana: An Identification and Reference Guide” by Jeff Boundy and John L. Carr. This week, Mona Hayden, publisher of Louisiana Road Trips magazine, offers a review of the LSU Press book.

“This invaluable guidebook will teach you to identify and appreciate the complex behaviors and habits of Louisiana’s 147 amphibian and reptile species, including endangered species. With over 780 photos and about 150 maps, the content has been written and organized for casual observers and herpetologists. From salamanders and snakes to frogs, turtles and lizards, if a cold-blooded species is found in Louisiana, it’s also found on these pages. There’s even an alligator and eight non-native species that have found their way to Louisiana. The authors have described each species in detail using identification keys and drawings. By thoroughly researching and documenting the extreme biodiversity of our state, this one book is all encompassing and should be on the bookshelves of anyone who enjoys the outdoors.”

New releases
It’s argued that French and Spanish assistance during the American Revolution turned the tide for the American colonists. Author Larrie D. Ferreiro insists so in the Pulitzer Prize finalist “Brothers at Arms: American Independence and the Men of France and Spain Who Saved It.” The author discusses the odds against an American victory, with the colonists having no navy, few arms and little money with which to wage a war against the powerful British military forces. According to the author, Spain and France provided the Americans with what in today’s dollars would be nearly $30 billion in financial assistance, as well as 90 percent of all the guns the colonists used. The two nations also sent thousands of soldiers.

Meet the Author
Lynne Olson will discuss “Last Hope Island: Britain, Occupied Europe, and the Brotherhood That Helped Turn the Tide of War,” and how London became a refuge for the governments of six occupied nations when Nazi Germany took over their lands, Tuesday at the World War II Museum in New Orleans. The event begins with a 5 p.m. reception, following by the 6 p.m. presentation and 7 p.m. book signing in the US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center. This program is free and open to the public, but seating is limited. Register for this event online or by calling (504) 528-1944 x 412. The event will also be presented as a live stream on the museum’s website.
Book events for May 7-13
The University of First Presbyterian presents a two-night writers series titled “A Poet’s Perspective with Darrell Bourque” on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings at First Presbyterian Church in Shreveport. Tuesday night will be a meal and presentation and Wednesday “A Writer’s Workshop.” For more information, call (318) 222-0604 or visit

Sheryl Sandberg, best-selling author of “Lean In,” will discuss her latest book, “Option B: Facing Adversity, Building Resilience, and Finding Joy” in conversation with political strategist Mary Matalin at 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Garden District Book Shop in New Orleans. This is a ticketed event; visit

Beyond Black History Month Lecture Series features historian and author Dr. LaGuana Gray of the University of Texas at San Antonio who will speak about African-American women’s lives and labors at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Main Lafayette Library.

Mary Kay Andrews will discuss and sign “The Beach House Cookbook” at 6 p.m. Wednesday at Octavia Books of New Orleans.  

George Graham will sign copies of his cookbook, “Acadiana Table,” from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday at The Kitchenary, 456 Heymann Blvd. in Lafayette.
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