I am still recovering from our trip to New Orleans! Since UNTOUCHED is set in NOLA and much of it takes place in the French Quarter, I decided to include it in my book tour. Coincidentally, it was a great excuse to take a much needed vacation with my hubby!
The Hotel Monteleone on Royal Street is a Literary Landmark Hotel, one of only three in the USA, and they were kind enough to host me for a book signing in the historic Carousel Bar. The folks from the hotel treated me like a rock star and our stay was spectacular!
The hotel and the bar are both featured in UNTOUCHED. In fact, the last time we were in NOLA I was doing research for the book. Our first day in NOLA we had a chance to stop by the old cemetary at the edge of the French Quarter that houses the tomb of famed voodoo priestess Marie Laveau! They say that if you make the sign of three x’s, knock three times, spin in a circle three times and leave her an offering…she’ll grant your wish.
You know I did it! I did it the last time we were there too and both the wishes I asked for were granted. I sure hope she’s feeling generous again…I’ll let you know. After I left my offering, I wandered the rest of the cemetery and came across another tomb that looked to be decorated similarly to Marie’s “official” grave. A local gentleman, who was picking up trash in the cemetery, told me that this unmarked grave was the real tomb of Marie Laveau. He said also said that she supposedly lived to be 120 years old but the truth is that there were three Marie Laveaus…3 generations that is. The original Marie along with her daughter and granddaughter kept the family voodoo business going. So before you ask…yes…I did the ritual, left an offering and made my wish at both tombs.
Hey–you can never be too careful when dealing with a voodoo priestess.
That night we had a rip-roaring time on Bourbon Street with a couple of dear friends and lots of military men! It was also Fleet Week in NOLA. I kept thinking that all of my single girlfriends should’ve flown down to meet us.
The next day we hit Jackson Square. The cathedral is just spectacular inside and out! The tarot card readers were out in full force, along with the artists and musicians. The square was bustling and as colorful as ever!
I also ate and drank more than I have in a very long time. I basically refused nothing and I think I gained ten pounds while I was there. I don’t care. It was worth it.
That night was the signing at The Carousel Bar and we had a blast! I met new friends and saw some familiar faces from Facebook–which was a trip! I didn’t get pictures with everyone but I did manage to capture a few.
On our last evening I had the distinct pleasure of attending an Operation PROM-NOLA event, hosted by the lovely Donielle Veal. I was so impressed by the young people that we had the chance to meet. There was food, drink, a fashion show with some of the donated dresses and even musical performances. The two performers were awesome! LuckyLou performed his original song, Stomp the Violence. This guy performs at schools all over NOLA and encourages kids to stay in school and off the streets.
Here’s his video–I hope you’ll pass it on because the message is great!
The other performer is known as the MJ of NOLA. He’s one of the best Michael Jackson impersonators I’ve ever seen. You can check him out here!
When we left to catch our plane at about four in the morning on Saturday, Bourbon Street was still hoppin’! I tell ya…the people of NOLA know how to party.
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