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lauramsgarden Nov 2nd, 2011 02:18 PM

best Ann Rice (or other novels) to prepare for New Orleans trip
I'm already a fan of Barbara Hambly and Julie Smith. suggestions for the best Anne Rice novels to get in the mood for New Orleans? any other authors I ought to peruse in the fiction department? thanks

abram Nov 2nd, 2011 03:39 PM

I like Frances Parkinson Keyes--toured her house the first time I wenht to NOLA.

carolyn Nov 2nd, 2011 03:57 PM

I like Keyes, too. Read Crescent Carnival and Dinner at Antoines. They are out of print, but you may find them at your library or you can order on line.

nytraveler Nov 2nd, 2011 04:18 PM

For a really good book about New Orelans read All the KIng's Men - a fascinating account of populist politician Huey Long's rule in New Orleans. (I don;t think their politics have changed much since then.)

scarboroughmom Nov 2nd, 2011 04:28 PM

"The Witching Hour" and "Interview with the Vampire"

travisblue Nov 2nd, 2011 06:07 PM

Not a novel, but a really nice and informative travel article from Conde Nast, it's from 2009, but still a worthwhile read.

november_moon Nov 3rd, 2011 01:45 PM

Ooooo - you are speaking my language :) I love reading books set in a place that I am going and New Orleans is one of my favorite settings.

The Witching Hour and Interview are definitely tops on my list for Anne Rice in New Orleans. Another great book is Feast of All Saints - this is historical fiction (not horror or fantasy) about free people of color in antebellum New Orleans. Really good read. Merrick is another good one.

I really like Julie Smith's stuff too - and if you enjoy mysteries, you might check out David Fulmer's Valentin St. Cyr series. St. Cyr is a detective in the FQ in the early 1900s. I've read Chasing the Devil's Tale and Jass, which were both very good. Rampart Street and Lost River are on my list, but I haven't read them yet.

For short stories, New Orleans Noir is great - lots of stories by different authors. I think Julie Smith is the compiler for that book. And those stories can be jumping off points to read more by those authors if you like what you read.

James Lee Burke has written a bunch of detective/crime novels set in New Orleans, but I have never really gotten into his stuff - a lot of people love it though.

Storyville by Lois Battle is good - takes place in the infamous red light district in the late 19th/early 20th century. It has been awhile since I read that one.

Barbara Hanby is another mystery writer with books set in New Orleans. I've read Wet Grave, which is book 6 in the Benjamin January series - a little out of order. Books 1-5 are on my to-read list.

hawksbill Nov 3rd, 2011 03:27 PM

If you're open to a collection of short stories by different authors, I highly recommend <i>French Quarter Fiction: The Newest Stories of America's Oldest Bohemia,</i> edited by Joshua Clark and James Nolan.

One of my favorite novels is <i>A Confederacy of Dunces,</i> by John Kennedy Toole. It's brilliantly written, and truly hilarious. New Orleans is sort of just the setting of the story, not its focus, so you don't necessarily need to read it before your trip. However, if you do, be sure to check out the statue of Ignatius J. Reilly on Canal Street.

lauramsgarden Nov 6th, 2011 04:34 PM

Thanks so much everyone, great suggestions. November Moon - definitely read "a free Man of Color" - the series is so well written. I'm going to go download some of these now.

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