#NOLA Wednesday: Nashville & Magazine

Behind the scenes with Pirate’s Alley

In this week’s edition, I’d like to re-introduce you to the part of uptown New Orleans that has played such a big role in the books: the corner of Nashville Avenue and Magazine Street.

In the books, the four corners of this intersection are taken up by DJ’s house; Eugenie Dupre’s house, with the entrance to her hair salon on the side; Marinello’s Pizza café; and Quince Randolph’s nursery, Plantasy Island.

In reality, Marinello’s is the Uptown Pharmacy, but is based on Reginelli’s Pizza, located a few blocks down.


In the spot where DJ’s house sits in the book, there has been kind of revolving door in the little house that used to be a residence. Before Hurricane Katrina, it was the Quilt Cottage. After Katrina, it sat empty a while and then was a meat market. Now, I think it’s being renovated yet again for a restaurant. DJ’s house is based on the house on Carondelet Street that was next door to my house:

Chapman House

If you look down Magazine Street from in front of “DJ’s house,” there’s a row of adorable shotguns and modified shotguns. The one next to DJ is supposed to be Alex’s house.

magazine shotguns

The building Rand bought for Plantasy Island was, before Katrina, a Starbuck’s. It sat empty forever and ever, but now there’s a Pita Pit restaurant there. Building looks the same, though, and it’s the building I based Plantasy Island on.


Through the trees here, across Nashville from DJ’s house is the place I chose for Eugenie’s house. It’s really a coffee shop/café called the Luna Café. There is a hair salon directly behind it, but I don’t know that the salon and the café are related.


When PIRATE’S ALLEY begins, DJ is staying with Eugenie. Her house met with an unfortunate end in ELYSIAN FIELDS, and although Alex and Jake fixed up Gerry’s old house in Lakeview, they didn’t get around to installing heat and New Orleans is having a cold wave. DJ eventually gets other accommodations, but Eugenie’s is where she starts out with a few sleepovers with Alex, of course .

I’m giving away a rare print ARC of Pirate’s Alley this week. You can comment on Sunday’s post for one entry and comment on this one for a second entry. The winner will be announced on Sunday. Come back tomorrow for the weekly TBR Five-Book Giveaway!

26 thoughts on “#NOLA Wednesday: Nashville & Magazine

  1. Have you ever read the Benjamin January books by Barbara Hambly? Most are set in New Orleans in the early 1800’s. The city is as much a character as any of the people. The houses, the smells, the sights are so vivid in her books. I feel the same about your books, it is obvious how much you love New Orleans.

    • I haven’t read those, Susan–I’m off to look them up now. It’s funny–New Orleans is one of those places people either fall in love with or they absolutely despise it. There’s rarely any middle ground!

  2. Always enjoy the photos and background of NOLA. Thanks. Got a recipe from Betty Crocker, Muffuletta Egg Bake, breakfast just got better.

    • Yes, the classic New Orleans shotgun house was called that because they are only one room wide and very deep, so you walk into the parlor, then into the dining room, then into the bedroom with a small bathroom to the side, and in the back is the kitchen, with a back door. One can theoretically fire a shotgun through the front door and have it pass unimpeded through the house and out the back door. Thus, “shotgun house”! My house in New Orleans was a “modified shotgun” because the original side porch had been closed in in the 1920s to make an additional set of rooms…but you could still stand in the front door and see straight through to the back door 🙂

  3. Thanks for the pictures. I love the descriptions in the books but the pictures are great too!

  4. Since I have never been to New Orleans, I really appreciate the pictures of locations that have inspired your writing. Thanks for sharing.

    • Thanks :-). I love the architecture of the city so much that it’s fun to write about it. Of course a goodly portion of it might get blown up in Pirate’s Alley. Just sayin’….

    • Thanks, Janie! I was thinking today about that corner and wondering why I chose that for DJ’s spot. I think it was just one of those funky part-commercial, part-residential neighborhoods in a part of New Orleans that didn’t flood. I lived about a mile from that intersection.

  5. I can’t wait to read Pirate’s Alley! I love your description’s and pictures of New Orleans. It is on my list of places I would love to visit.