Helen Ellis in Conversation With Julia Reed: Southern Lady Code: Essays

Wednesday, May 1st


Helen Ellis has a mantra: "If you don't have something nice to say, say something not-so-nice in a nice way." Say "weathered" instead of "she looks like a cake left out in the rain." Say "early-developed" instead of "brace face and B cups." And for the love of Coke Salad, always say "Sorry you saw something that offended you" instead of "Get that stick out of your butt, Miss Prissy Pants."

In these twenty-three raucous essays Ellis transforms herself into a dominatrix Donna Reed to save her marriage, inadvertently steals a $795 Burberry trench coat, witnesses a man fake his own death at a party, avoids a neck lift, and finds a black-tie gown that gives her the confidence of a drag queen. While she may have left her home in Alabama, married a New Yorker, forgotten how to drive, and abandoned the puffy headbands of her youth, Helen Ellis is clinging to her Southern accent like mayonnaise to white bread, and offering readers a hilarious, completely singular view on womanhood for both sides of the Mason-Dixon.

This book is available in hardcover ($22.00)

Helen Ellis in conversation with Julia Reed, discussing her book, Southern Lady Code: Essays. Helen will sign books afterward.

If you are unable to attend, you must call the book shop to order signed books.

Diane C. McPhail: The Abolitionist's Daughter

Tuesday, May 7th


On a Mississippi morning in 1859, Emily Matthews begs her father to save a slave, Nathan, about to be auctioned away from his family. Judge Matthews is an abolitionist who runs an illegal school for his slaves, hoping to eventually set them free. One, a woman named Ginny, has become Emily’s companion and often her conscience—and understands all too well the hazards an educated slave must face. Yet even Ginny could not predict the tangled, tragic string of events set in motion as Nathan’s family arrives at the Matthews farm.

A young doctor, Charles Slate, tends to injured Nathan and begins to court Emily, finally persuading her to become his wife. But their union is disrupted by a fatal clash and a lie that will tear two families apart. As Civil War erupts, Emily, Ginny, and Emily’s stoic mother-in-law, Adeline, each face devastating losses. Emily—sheltered all her life—is especially unprepared for the hardships to come. Struggling to survive in this raw, shifting new world, Emily will discover untapped inner strength, an unlikely love, and the courage to confront deep, painful truths.

This book is available in hardcover ($26.00).

Diane C. McPhail discusses and signs her book, The Abolitionist's Daughter.

If you are unable to attend, you must call the book shop to order signed books.

Independent Book Store Day 2019

Saturday, May 11th


Independent Bookstore Day  -  New Orleans  2019


Join the fun and support your local independent bookstore!

Garden District Book ShopTubby & Coo’s Mid-City Book Shop, Blue Cypress Books and Octavia Books are celebrating Independent Bookstore Day (IBD)Each store is planning special activities, and together they are offering the chance to win $100 in gift certificates to book lovers who visit all four participating bookstores as part of a fun scavenger hunt. Each store will be selling exclusive literary-themed books, art, and gift items created just for IBD.

At Garden District Book Shop;

  • Spend $20.00 in our humor section and receive a free signed Jenny Lawson Poster (while supplies last).

  • You'll receive a Independent Book Store Day tote bag if you spend $30 or more (while supplies last).

  • Advance Reading Copies (ARCs) to anyone making a purchase of $15 or more (while supplies last).

  • * And some special IBD merchandise (while supplies last).

To celebrate Independent Bookstore Day on Saturday, May 11, we have partnered with two other local book shops – Blue Cypress Books, Octavia Books, and Tubby and Coo's Mid-City Book Shop – to bring you a Bookstore Passport.  This passport can be picked up from any of the stores. Go to each bookstore and collect a sticker for the passport for that store. When you have collected all 4 stickers (one from each store), you get entered into the grand prize raffle ($50 gift certificate from each store, totaling $200).


  1. At the first of the four book shops you visit on Independent Bookstore Day, May 11, 2018, tell an employee that you’d like to participate in the bookstore passport.

  2. Collect a sticker for your passport when you visit each of the four bookstores.

  3. Once you have visited all four bookstores you will out a form with your name, phone number, and e-mail address.

  4. After May 11, all completed passports will be entered into a drawing.

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