Twelfth Night

“Will be the gilded bean in your Mardi Gras king cake.” –New Orleans Times-Picayune

Twelfth_Night_BNSet amid a single carnival season, this haunting tale exposes a subject rarely examined in the countless books on antebellum New Orleans. Crashing across barriers of race, sex and social taboos and teeming with emotional intensity, it is ultimately a story of redemption and salvation.

The year is 1857, New Orleans’s Golden Era when cotton, sugar, rice and slavery buoyed it to extravagant heights of wealth and indulgence. The city is divided between the French Creoles and the Americans, disparate societies sharing neither language, customs, religion nor cuisines and deeply suspicious of one another. These worlds collide when Justine Blancard, a privileged Creole with a shameful secret, meets Virginian Duncan Saunders on Twelfth Night. Their treacherous liaison, unfolding against the tawdry glamour and raw violence of Mardi Gras, is as heady as carnival itself before reaching a shattering conclusion on Ash Wednesday.

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“Entertaining…a solid sense of life in antebellum New Orleans.” — Publisher’s Weekly

“Llewellyn has a real gift for atmosphere and characterization…exploiting the rich possibilities of the Quadroon Balls, the class conflict of Mardi Gras, and the voodoo legends of Congo Square and Marie Laveau.” — New Orleans Times-Picayune.

“Accurately captures the atmosphere of New Orleans and Mardi Gras. The background material is well-researched, the spicy story is well-written and the pace is suspenseful.” — The Jackson Clarion- Ledger

“Nothing is as it seems in Twelfth Night’s mysterious world of love and intrigue, passion and betrayal.” — Ciji ware, author of Island of the Swans

“A revealing glimpse of what happens when the discreet lace curtains of antebellum Creole society are blown apart by the winds of erotic domination and repression. A shattering finale.” — Bethany Ewald Bultman, author of Reflections of the South

“Set in the rich cultural gumbo of 19th century New Orleans, the history and lore of that fabled city’s Belle Epoque is interwoven through every turn of the plot. A compelling tale.” — Richard Sexton, co-author of New Orleans: Elegance and Decadence

“A tortured woman and an honorable man caught between innocence and desire. Lushly rendered, this look at the dark underbelly of antebellum society is impeccably researched.” –Rexanne Becnel, author of Dangerous to Love