Local Spotlight

Local Authors Local Fiction Local Non-Fiction

There’s nothing more fun than introducing new readers to books we love. We’ve organized some of our favorites here for you, and we hope you’ll enjoy them as much as we have.

Local Authors back to top

Maple Street’s List of Local Authors

Local Authors: Please come in throughout the year at your convenience and sign your book(s) and let us know if we are running low on your titles, or if we have left you off our list. Thanks!

Ralph Adamo
Teresa Adams
Pamela Gray Ahearn
Susan Wittig Albert
Benjamin Aleshire
Kevin Allman
Stephen Ambrose
J. Edward Ames
Berthe Amoss
Nancy Anderson
Walter Ingles Anderson
Douglas Brinkley
Patrick Andrews
Judy Andry
Orissa Arend
Joe Arrigo
Mike Artell
Brod Bagert
Calvin Baker
William Balee
William F. Banta
Claudia Barker
Danny Barker
Wilton Barnhardt
Janet Barnwell
Nevada Barr
Elizabeth Barron
John Barry
Rick Barton
Randolph Bates
Dick Baumbach
James Beal
John Barry (right)
Roberta Shoemaker Beal
Rexanne Becnel
Robin Beeman
Christopher Benfey
Lawrence Bergreen
Shane Bernard
Jason Berry
John Besh
Marcelle Bienvenu
John Biguenet
Gunter Bischof
Tom Bonner
D. Eric Bookhardt
Bill Borah
Joseph Bosco
Sheila Bosworth
George A. Effinger
O’Neil De Noux
Garry Boulard
Amanda Boyden
Joseph Boyden
Ella Brennan
Lally Brennan
John Ed Bradley
Patricia Brady
Quo Vadis Breaux
Milton Brener
Ruby Bridges
Tyler Bridges
Doug Brinkley
Poppy Z. Brite
Barri Bronston
Catherine Savage Brosman
Barbara Jo Brothers
Dorothy Brown
Ethan Brown
John Gregory Brown
Elizabeth Brown-Guillory
William Brumfield
Violet Harrington Bryan
Bethany Ewald Bultman
Howard A.Buechner, M.D.
Raymond J. Burby
Paul Burka
Alafair Burke
James Lee Burke
Robert Olen Butler
Richard Campanella
Maxine Cassin
Michael D. Chafetz
Charles D. Chamberlain
Fred Chappell
Joshua Clark
Katherine Clark
Sandra Russell Clark
Jim Clinton
Andrei Codrescu
Joseph Cohen
James Colbert
Barbara Colley
Phillip Collier
Maria Compagno
Nancy Collins
Nicole Cooley
Peter Cooley
Orlin Corey
John Corrington
Alice Couvillon
Courtney Cowart
Robert Crais
Moira Crone
Dale Curry
Jacqueline D’Acre
Rosemary Daniell
Cecilia Casrill Dartez
Franklin Daugherty
Albert Belisle Davis
Frank Davis
Charles deGravelles
John DeMers
O’Neil De Noux
Randolph Delehanty
Tom Dent
Toi Derricotte
John Dillman
Sharon Arms Doucet
Nancy Dixon
Pie Dufour
John Dufresne
Sophie Dunbar
Tony Dunbar
Louis Edwards
George Alec Effinger
Lolis Eric Elie
Barbara Ewell
Madhi Fard
Bud Faust
Tony Fennelly
Ernest Ferlita, S. J.
Peter Finney
TJ Fisher
Tom Fitsmorris
Robert Florence
John Folse
Mark Folse
Don H. Fontenelle, Ph.D.
Richard Ford
Sally Forman
Ken Foster
Andrew Fox
V. P. Franklin
Tina Freeman
West Freeman
Sylvia R. Frey
Patty Friedmann
Ernest Gaines
Tim Gautreaux
Mary Gehman
Carol Gelderman
Norman German
Alan Gersen
John Gery
Ellen Gilchrist
James Gill
Sallie Ann Glassman
Richard Godden
Ann Goethe
Marie D. Goodwin
Eric Gorham
Debra Gould
Shirley Ann Grau
Valerie D. Greenberg
Bill Griffin
Emilie Griffin
Stephen M. Griffin
Lee Grue
Paige Guiterrez
Roy F. Guste
Modine Gunch (Liz Scott)
Minrose Gwin
Charles D. Hadley
G.M. Hall
Barbara Hambly
Walt Handelsman
Jeff Hannusch
Tad Hardy
M.A. Harper
Nancy Harris
Thorne D. Harris III
Malcolm Heard
Earl Higgins
Metsy Hingl
Arnold R. Hirsch
Linda Hobson
Shelley Holl
Jed Horne
Andrew Horton
Greg Iles
Brian Keith Jackson
Sid Jacobson
Rosemary James
James S. Jansen
Debra Johnson
Neil Johnson
Tad Jones
Deborah Ousley Kadai
Rodger Kamenetz
Julie Kane
M.S. Karl
Richard Katrovas
Charlyn Keating
David Kellogg
Richard Kennedy
Rosemary Kennedy
Victor C. Klein
Thomas A. Klinger
Phillip Kolin
Errol Laborde
Kris Lackey
Emerile Lagasse
John F. Landrum
Pinkie Gordon Lane
Susan Larson
Clarence John Laughlin
Mel Leavitt
Bernard Lee
Nancy Lemann
Nicholas Lemann
Michael Lewis
Donald Link
Michael Llewellen
C.C. Lockwood
Bill Loehfelm
Anne Logan
Joseph Logsdon
Alecia P. Long
Alfred Lawrence Lorenz
Annie Lousteau
Pam Lyles
Joseph P. Mackey
David Madden
Everette Maddox
William F. Maestri
John Maginnis
Louis Maistros
Lee Malone
Paul Malone
Robert Mann
Brennan Manning
Leta Weiss Marks
Bev Marshall
Deborah Martin
Ti Adelaide Martin
Valerie Martin
Bunny Matthews
Kerri McCaffety
Mary McCay
Walter McCloskey
Martha McFerren
Wayne McGaw
Meagan McKinney
David Middleton
Tory Mcphail
Marilyn Mendoza
John Miller
Raeburn Miller
Elizabeth Moore
Paula Morris
Kay Murphy
Sharif H. Nadir
Rene Pol Nevils
Harold Newman
Ira Nierenberg
Matthew Nolan
Bode Noonan
Adam Nossiter
Ruth Olivera
Ethelyn G. Orso
Brenda Marie Osbey
Sue Owen
Thomas Pawley
Sam B. Pearson III
Walker Percy
Betsy Petersen
Tom Piazza
Mark Plotkin
James Polster
Lawrence N. Powell
Helen Prejean, C.S.J.
James Prine
Corey Pulitzer
Gloria Teles Pushker
Lloyd Pye
Stephen Rea
Julia Reed
Anne Rice
Christopher Rice
Stan Rice
Wilbert Rideau
Joseph Roach
Sara Roahen
Sally-Ann Roberts
Robert Robins
Kim Lacy Rogers
Chris Rose
Michael A. Ross
Laura Joh Rowland
Josh Russell
Michael F. Russo
Coleen Salley
Kalamu ya Salaam
James Sallis
John Salvaggio
Patrick Samway
Tom Sancton
Michael Saxer
Henri Schindler
Wade Schindler
Frank Schneider
Donald Schueler
Julia Schueler
David M. Schnarch, M.D.
Terry L. Searcy
Robert Segal
Charlotte Seidenberg
Richard Sexton
Fatima Shaik
Jamie Shannon
Maureen E. Shea
Gail K. Sheffield
Steven A. Shull
M.K. Shuman
Ronnie Shushan
Barbara Sillery
Julia Sims
Bob Skinner
Cyncie Smith
Julie Smith
Michael P. Smith
Morris Smith
Fred Snyder
Alan Sobl
Katherine Soniat
Susan Spicer
David G. Spielman
Jerry Speir
Buddy Stall
Jerry Strahan
Whitney Stewart
Robert Stone
Redding Sugg Jr.
Harriet Swift
Retta M. Taney
Anne Teachworth
Elisabeth Tetlow
Robert Theobald
Mike Tidwell
Jessie Tirsch
Michael Tisserand
Chris Tompkins
Poppy Tooker
John Kennedy Toole
Emily Toth
Lucian K. Truscott IV
Susan Tucker
Suzanne Turner
Chris Tusa
Nan Van Den Bergh
Christine Vella
Stephen Verderber
Olympia Vernon
Jan Villarubia
Daniel Vilmure
John Vivian
Lloyd Vogt
Cheryl Wagner
Nancy Wagner
Martha Ward
Lee Walmsley
Derry Ward
Robert G. Watts
Mary Lou Widmer
Gregory Williams
Ron Wikberg
Chris Wiltz
Jonathan Wise
Susan Wise
Kit Wohl
Stephen Womack
Dalt Wonk
Margaret Woodward
Benjamin Wren
Geoffrey Wyess

Local Fiction back to top

Spotlight on local authors, books, and literary life:

Walker Percy, a great friend to Maple Street Book Shop, used the backdrop of Mardi Gras in his first novel, The Moviegoer, which won the National Book Award.

John Kennedy Toole created in A Confederacy of Dunces one of the most hilarious and authentic portraits of New Orleans crazies and characters. And some Maple Street Book Shop people played lunatic roles themselves in helping Thelma Toole, Toole’s mother, get the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel published. Also, the shop gave two parties for her. The first (co-hosted by writer Chris Wiltz) celebrated Louisiana State University agreeing to publish the book, and the second featured Thelma Toole playing the piano, singing in memory of her “genius” son, and signing copies of her deceased son’s book. At the second party, apparently everyone’s attention hadn’t been rapturous enough for her. She later pronounced that a certain local author had been “cavorting with the young people.”

Native Chris Wiltz, who worked at Maple Street Book Shop, is the creator of New Orleans private investigator Neal Rafferty, who stars in The Killing Circle and The Emerald Lizard.

Sherwood Anderson, author of Winesburg, Ohio, came to New Orleans in 1922 and encouraged other writers to follow. He was partly responsible for drawing William Faulkner to the city.

Two-time Edgar-Award-winner James Lee Burke is best known for his Cajun detective, Dave Robicheaux.

In 1920, writers and intellectuals in New Orleans founded The Double Dealer, a literary magazine that went on to publish such writers as Ernest Hemingway, Faulkner, Robert Penn Warren, and Edmund Wilson.

Faulkner wrote a piece for The Double Dealer called New Orleans. It includes sketches of eleven different New Orleans characters, including the priest, the beggar, the artist, and the tourist. He also wrote and set his novel Mosquitoes in New Orleans.

Occasional residents and visitors to the city included Gertrude Stein, John Dos Passos, Sinclair Lewis, and Thomas Wolfe.

William Spratling and Faulkner created a book of caricatures of local figures titled Sherwood Anderson and Other Famous Creoles. Anderson was not amused.

Richard Ford, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for his novel Independence Day, has a home in the Garden District with his wife, Kristina, who was the city planner for New Orleans.

New Orleans Review was the first to publish John Kennedy Toole. The journal printed an excerpt of A Confederacy of Dunces in 1978.

Lillian Hellman, born in New Orleans in 1905, used her birthplace as the setting for several of her plays, including Toys in the Attic.

Galatoire’s, a famous local restaurant, was the spot Faulkner chose to hold a dinner when he received his advance for Mosquitoes. Patty Friedmann (with the help of Maple Street Book Shop) chose Galatoire’s as her host for a party to celebrate the release of her novel Eleanor Rushing.

Ernest Gaines, who found a wide audience after Oprah Winfrey chose his book A Lesson Before Dying for her book club, grew up outside of New Orleans on a plantation near New Roads, Louisiana. Though most of his books are set in that area of the state, his characters often travel to the city and speak of its charms. Gaines won the National Book Critics Circle Award in 1993.

Sherwood Anderson called New Orleans “surely the most civilized spot in America.”

Valerie Martin grew up in New Orleans and set many of her books here, including Set in Motion, Alexandra, and The Great Divorce. In A Recent Martyr, a plague of rats takes over the city.

New Orleans native Hamilton Basso, author of Relics and Angels and Cinnamon Seed, studied law at Tulane University, but dropped out before receiving his degree. Charles Dufour, local historian and writer, claimed that he and Basso were both expelled.

Truman Capote, who was born in New Orleans in 1924, created the non-fiction novel when he wrote In Cold Blood.

Julie Smith won the Edgar Award in 1991 for New Orleans Mourning.

One of the city’s favorite sons, Tom Dent, a poet and the author of Southern Journey, lived and worked in New Orleans. Recently deceased, he is missed and loved by many.

Audubon Zoo serves as the setting for much of The Great Divorce by Valerie Martin.

Shelton Le Fleur falls from a tree in Audubon Park and his life is radically altered in John Gregory Brown’s The Wrecked, Blessed Body of Shelton Le Fleur. The Ponchartrain Bridge, the longest bridge in the country, collapses in the first scene of Brown’s first book, Decorations in a Ruined Cemetery.

“Don’t you just love these long, rainy afternoons in New Orleans when an hour isn’t an hour—but a little piece of eternity dropped into your hands—and who knows what to do with it?” —_A Streetcar Named Desire_, Tennessee Williams

Shirley Ann Grau, who has lived in and around New Orleans most of her life, won the Pulitzer Prize in 1965 (at 35 years old—making her the youngest woman to win the prize) for her novel The Keepers of the House.

Sheila Bosworth, author of Almost Innocent and Slow Poison, was born in New Orleans. Walker Percy called Almost Innocent “a lovely achievement, a superior one.”

Ellen Gilchrist named one of her main characters and her book Rhoda for the owner of Maple Street Book Shop, Rhoda K. Faust.

Miller Williams, who was chosen to read a poem at Bill Clinton’s second inauguration, founded The New Orleans Review at Loyola University.

Berthe Amoss, author of many children’s books including It’s Not Your Birthday and Tom in the Middle, was born and lives in New Orleans.

Native Brenda Marie Osbey won the American Book Award for her collection of poetry All Saints.

“Maple Street Book Shop . . . has served for almost thirty years as the vital literary center of modern New Orleans. One day, perhaps some enterprising graduate student will find its history worthy of a dissertation.” —Earl N. Harbert, Tulane University professor in the sixties (excerpted from a review of Louisiana Women Writers by Dorothy H. Brown and Barbara C. Ewell in “Studies in American Fiction” Northeastern University, Spring 1994)

Whodunit?

WHODUNIT IN NEW ORLEANS
Walk down some mysterious Crescent City streets.

The Neon Rain by James Lee Burke (Pocket Books, mass market, $6.99)
This is the first in the Dave Robicheaux series. Robicheaux, a New Orleans cop, has fought too many battles: in Vietnam, with killers and hustlers, with police brass, and the bottle. Lost without his wife’s love, his haunted soul mirrors the intensity and dusky mystery of New Orleans French Quarter—the place he calls home, and the place that nearly destroys him when he becomes involved in the case of a young prostitute whose body is found in a bayou.

“Burke writes the kind of crime/suspense novels other writers wish they could write.”
—Cleveland Plain Dealer

Visit Burke’s official website: www.jamesleeburke.com/

New Orleans Mourning by Julie Smith (Fawcett, mass market, $6.50)
This first book in the series about policewoman Skip Langdon. When a costumed sniper kills the king of Mardi Gras krewe Rex, Skip must investigate the tangled clues and ancient secrets that culminate in danger.

“This story takes place in the hidden heart of New Orleans, a separate, special world, at once sad and touching. Smith is a gifted writer and she tells her story on many levels, through many dimensions. This is hardly just a mystery story.” —The Washington Post Book World

www.juliesmithauthor.com/

Liquor by Poppy Z. Brite (Three Rivers Press, paperback, $13.95)
New Orleans natives Rickey and G-man are line cooks looking to move up in the world. They’re sure their new restaurant, Liquor, will be an instant success, but a series of run-ins with some nasty characters threatens to turn their dream into a waking nightmare.

“Liquor is world-class satire and perfect New Orleans lit.” —Andrei Codrescu

www.poppyzbrite.com

Fat White Vampire Blues by Andrew Fox (Ballantine, paperback, $13.95)
Although he’s felt at home in New Orleans for over a century, Jules Duchon is an unhappy vampire. He’s overweight, lonely, and struggling to keep up with the challenges of immortality. When a new vampire comes to town and burns down Jules’ house as a warning, our protagonist must concentrate all his energy on staying undead—not an easy task for a hungry vampire living amongst some of the most well-fed people in the world.

“After two decades of reviewing books for Fangoria, I don’t recall being as surprised and delighted as I was with Fat White Vampire Blues. Andrew Fox’s hero is the anti-Lestat we didn’t even know we needed. This is the best thing to happen to vampire fiction in ages.” —Linda Marotta, Fangoria Magazine

www.andrewfoxbooks.com/andrewfox.htm

Local Non-Fiction back to top

FEATURED TITLES

Bienville’s Dilemma: A Historical Geography of New Orleans by Richard Campanella

The World That Made New Orleans: From Spanish Silver to Congo Square by Ned Sublette

The Last Madam: A Life In The New Orleans Underworld by Chris Wiltz

Storyville, New Orleans: Being an Authentic, Illustrated Account of the Notorious Red Light District by Al Rose

The House on First Street: My New Orleans Story by Julia Reed

New Orleans 1960 by William Claxton

1 Dead in Attic by Chris Rose