Tricentennial Reading List

Tuesdays during Morning Edition (8:44 a.m.) and All Things Considered (5:44 p.m.)

Make the most of your reading hours during 2018, New Orleans’ tricentennial year!  Join Susan Larson, host of The Reading Life, as she talks with local authors and readers about their favorite books from three hundred years of New Orleans literature. The Tricentennial Reading List will comprise the “top 300” books from multiple genres—fiction to food, murder mysteries to music.

Production of the Tricentennial Reading List is supported by the Helis Foundation, the John Burton Harter Foundation, and the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities.

  • The Accidental City: Improvising New Orleans, by Lawrence N. Powell
  • Troubled Memory: Anne Levy, the Holocaust, and David Duke’s Louisiana, by Lawrence N. Powell

Tricentennial Reading List With Nancy Dixon (Poetry)

Nov 6, 2018

  • Les Cenelles, edited by Armand Lanusse
  • From a Bend in the River:100 New Orleans Poets, edited by Kalamu ya Salaam
  • The Maple Leaf Rag, various editions
  • All Saints and All Souls, by Brenda Marie Osbey
  • I hope it's not over and goodbye, Everett Maddox
  • Magnolia Street, Tom Dent
  • it was today, Andrei Codrescu
  • While Sleeping, Bill Lavender 
  • Peter Cooley, Julie Kane, Brenda Marie Osbey – Louisiana poets laureate from New Orleans


  •  Stories from the St. Louis Cemeteries of New Orleans, by Sally Asher
  • Vol. 2 Friends of the Cabildo New Orleans Architecture series: Cemeteries.
  • Cemeteries of New Orleans: A Cultural History, by Peter Dedek
  • Elysium, A Gathering of Souls, New Orleans Cemeteries, by Sandra Russell Clark
  • New Orleans Cemeteries: Life in the Cities of the Dead, by Robert Florence, photographs by Mason Florence
  • Lagniappe: Getting Off at Elysian Fields: Obituaries from the New Orleans Times-Picayune, by John Pope


  21st century

  • The Floating World, by Morgan Babst
  • Restoration, by John Ed Bradley
  • The Not-Yet and Dream State, by Moira Crone
  • The Missing, by Tim Gautreaux
  • Hold It Til It Hurts, by T. Geronimo Johnson
  • The Sound of Building Coffins, by Louis Maistros
  • Property, by Valerie Martin
  • City of Refuge, by Tom Piazza
  • Fives and Twenty-fives, by Michael Pitre
  • King Zeno, by Nathaniel Rich
  • A Kind of Freedom, by Margaret Wilkerson Sexton

  • A Walk on the Wild Side, by Nelson Algren
  • Almost Innocent and Slow Poison, by Sheila Bosworth
  • Decorations in a Ruined Cemetery, by John Gregory Brown
  • The Wrecked, Blessed Body of Shelton Lafleur, by John Gregory Brown
  • A Good Scent from a Strange Mountain, by Robert Olen Butler
  • Messiah, by Andrei Codrescu
  • Ritual Murder, by Tom Dent
  • N: A Romantic Mystery, by Louis Edwards
  • Mosquitoes and Soldiers Pay and Pylon, by William Faulkner
  • In the Land of Dreamy Dreams, by Ellen Gilchrist
  • The House on Coliseum Street and Nine Women, by Shirley Ann Grau
  • Dinner at Antoine's, Frances Parkinson Keyes
  • Lives of the Saints, by Nancy Lemann
  • A Recent Martyr and The Consolation of Nature, by Valerie Martin
  • Coming through Slaughter, by Michael Ondaatje
  • The Moviegoer, by Walker Percy
  • City of Night, by John Rechy
  • Interview with the Vampire, by Anne Rice
  • Jitterbug Perfume, by Tom Robbins
  • Yellow Jack, Josh Russell
  • Mayor of New Orleans: Just Talking Jazz, Fatima Shaik
  • Hall of Mirrors, by Robert Stone
  • A Confederacy of Dunces, by John Kennedy Toole
  • Secessia, by Kent Wascom
  • Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood, by Rebecca Wells
  • Glass House, Christine Wiltz
  • A Streetcar Named Desire, by Tennessee Williams