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The Bluesiana Snake Festival

A Novel

List Price: $14.95

April 20, 2010 | Paperback | 5 x 8, 160 Pages | ISBN 9781582435770
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"...colorful characters such as Hidden Davey Crossway, Shushubaby, and Big Jim Bullshit, all city street sweepers, act as lenses through which readers explore the Big Easy's late-night backstreets in vivid, urine-stained detail..." —Publishers Weekly

“…Probably many a road scholar would testify this place makes good leavin’ and better comin’ back to… Place puts a hold on your soul, man, these streets call you like an old song…”

So starts The Bluesiana Snake Festival as Hidden Dave Crossway, a New Orleans street sweeper, celebrates the city in its pre-Katrina skin. With the night of the “snake moon” as the backdrop, we experience the lives, languages, and rhythms of the French Quarter, an unexpected urban idyll.

“Yeah… Way down river, heart of a swamp, she’s a city made of music, down soft ground between memory and dream…”

Through a blend of voices—Big Jim Bullshit, Shushubaby, and Brooklyn Bob, to name a few—the musical voice of New Orleans is revealed in their varied dialects, grooves reminiscent of ragtime, jazz, and blues. The result is a look into who these folks are, their ways and beliefs, their senses of truth, and of existence itself.

A novel about the joy and beauty of life in the depths, the momentum and narrative heart isn’t driven by a plot—it’s about the trance. “It’s all about hearing the music.”

AUBREY BART was born in Baltimore in 1949, and in no time the American highway outdistanced his formal education. A former New Orleans street sweeper, cabdriver, and bartender, Bart is a paperback writer at large in The School of Rock. This is his first novel. He lives in Maine.

Praise

“Covering a single (pre-Katrina) night, Bart’s story finds a full moon rising over a population busting at the seams; colorful characters such as Hidden Davey Crossway, Shushubaby, and Big Jim Bullshit, all city street sweepers, act as lenses through which readers explore the Big Easy’s late-night backstreets in vivid, urine-stained detail… Bart’s familiarity with the quarter shines.” —Publishers Weekly

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