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The Reading Life: Nikesha Williams, Shannon Kelley Atwater

Susan Larson talks with Nikesha Williams whose new book in the Louisiana True series is Mardi Gras Indians and Shannon Kelley Atwater whose new book is Goodnight Pothole.

Here’s what’s on tap in the literary life this week:

Nancy Wilson, author of “Mémère’s Country Creole Cookbook: Recipes and Memories from Louisiana’s German Coast,” will conduct a food demonstration at 7 p.m., Wednesday, Feb. 15, at the Jane O’Brian Chatelain Library West Bank Regional Library, 2751 Manhattan Blvd., Harvey, followed by a cocktail demonstration by Latrice McGill.

Calling Dads!! Community Book Center is looking for Dads to read to youth in March. Uncles too. To volunteer as a reader, call the bookstore at 504.948.7323.

And speaking of getting ready for March, start checking out the month of literary Festivals.

The New Orleans Book Festival at Tulane University takes place March 9-11 on the Tulane campus. There are a lot of special guests including last minute addition Bill Gates, as well as Carl Bernstein, Doug Brinkley, Geraldine Brooks, Maureen Dowd, Richard Ford, Eddie Glaude Jr., Nikole Hannah- Jones, Kiese Laymon, Michael Lewis, Heather McGehee, John Meacham, Michelle Miller, Marc Morial, Imani Perry, Annette Gordon-Reed, David Rubenstein, April Ryan, Clint Smith, Kara Swisher, and Ali Vitale. Check out bookfest.tulane,edu for complete schedule, and remember Saturday, March 11, is family day, with children’s authors and activities for the whole family.

The Tennessee Williams & New Orleans Literary Festival takes place March 22-26, headquartered at the Hotel Monteleone. Guests this year include Morgan Babst, Charles Baxter, Douglas Brinkley, Rien Fertel, Stephanie Grace, Miles Harvey, Cheryl Head, Cammie McGovern, Michael Paterniti, Tom Piazza, Nathaniel Rich, Maurice Carlos Ruffin, Katy Simpson Smith and many more.. Check out tennesseewilliams.net for info. Also that weekend at the Hotel Monteleone is the Saints and Sinners LGBTQ Literary Festival. Check out sasfest.org for that complete line-up.

The Reading Life in 2010, Susan Larson was the book editor for The New Orleans Times-Picayune from 1988-2009. She has served on the boards of the Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival and the New Orleans Public Library. She is the founder of the New Orleans chapter of the Women's National Book Association, which presents the annual Diana Pinckley Prizes for Crime Fiction.. In 2007, she received the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities lifetime achievement award for her contributions to the literary community. She is also the author of The Booklover's Guide to New Orleans. If you run into her in a local bookstore or library, she'll be happy to suggest something you should read. She thinks New Orleans is the best literary town in the world, and she reads about a book a day.