Sunday, June 11, 2017

Three Louisiana authors inspire with new books

Coach DJ Davis, a native of West Monroe, lettered in football at West Monroe High and the University of Louisiana at Monroe. His debut book, “Just Run The Play: A Playbook for Playmakers,” tells the story of his quest to become a middle school teacher and football coach despite challenges in his personal and career life. Davis has been teaching in the Ouachita Parish Schools for five years and has also founded the Just Run the Play Company, linking life and biblical examples to football plays in his book and through motivational speeches. His “summer tour” will include stops June 17 in Shreveport, June 24 in Baton Rouge, June 30-July 3 in New Orleans, July 15 in Dallas and July 22 in Sterlington. For more information, visit

Want more motivation?

Lafayette entrepreneur Frankie Russo has an astonishing resume: recording artist, mortgage broker and founder and CEO of Potenza advertising agency. He shares his success strategies, including rising from failure, in “The Art of Why,” explaining that business pioneers have a purpose — a why — which fuels their passion. Russo’s book is meant to be a road map for readers who look to find their own “why” in life. It comes with exercises, chapters that discuss making a plan, building a team, turning failure into opportunities and adapting, among much more.

Vincent Miholic is a founding administrator at South Louisiana Community college, taught at Southeastern and is now a training and development program manager for the state. He’s written “Bridging EngagementGaps: An Essential Resource Guide to Strengthen Workplace Engagement.” “The book explores the behaviors and actions that contribute to promoting optimal profit or service and examines the complex relationship that are directly tied to the generative and intrinsic patterns that create energy and satisfying fun, flow, passion and joy in work,” Miholic writes.

Pelican Publishing has re-released two popular Louisiana cookbooks. “The Buster Holmes Restaurant Cookbook: New Orleans Handmade Cookin’” features the Creole recipes of Holmes, who owned and operated his restaurant at 721 Burgundy St. for five decades. Food writer Poppy Tooker writes the foreword. In its fifth printing is “Justin Wilson Looking Back: A Cajun Cookbook,” filled with stories, photos and recipes from the storyteller and humorist. This cookbook was his final retrospective.

Book news
“A Confederacy of Dunces” by John Kennedy Toole, Kate Chopin’s “The Awakening” and Robert Penn Warren’s “All the King’s Men” have been included in The Library of Congress’s “America Reads,” an exhibition showcasing 65 books—chosen by the public—that had a profound effect on American life. “America Reads” exhibition opens Friday at the Library of Congress.

And speaking of those representing Louisiana at the Library of Congress, Michael Doucet and BeauSoleil will perform a “Cajun Music from Louisiana” program at noon June 28 in the library’s Coolidge Auditorium. The event is part of the library’s Homegrown 2017 Concerts in celebration of the 35th anniversary of the National Endowment for the Arts’ National Heritage Fellowships. 
At the library 
Local children’s book writers and illustrators will be on hand for the Creating Books for Children panel discussion Monday at the South Regional Library in Lafayette. Book sales and signings will follow the panel discussion and refreshments will be served. The discussion is sponsored by the Acadiana Group of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators.

It’s Family Movie Day beginning at 1 p.m. Friday at the West Ouachita Branch Library. Friday’s movie is “Big Hero Six,” appropriate for all ages. Visit for more information.

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