Anne Rice, lauded author of gothic fiction calls it, “Delightfully vivid bringing to life all the favorite haunts of the lively spirits both living and dead.”
Deborah Burst continues her series of discovery on a trail of history and mystery across Louisiana’s most solemn and revered locales. In her ten-year writing and photography career, Burst has combined her love for art, history and architecture into a poetic trail of Louisiana’s Sacred Places.
From New Orleans across the back roads of St. Tammany, Pointe Coupee and both East and West Feliciana Parishes, Burst brings an eccentric collage of cultures and customs to the page. It’s a colorful journey to the cities of the dead, the serenity of country churchyards, and the mesmerizing calling of spirits in a Voodoo ceremony.
Witness full-page photographs of the Moorish architecture inside the stunning Immaculate Conception Jesuit Church, the ghastly history of Our Lady of Guadalupe church, and a close up of St. Roch Chapel’s chamber of miracles. Moving west learn the telling portraits of Civil War casualties laid to rest under weeping oaks in Clinton and St. Francisville. More than churches and cemeteries, the book follows the legends of Pointe Coupee planter homes and river road wonders.
Along the cypress bayous in St. Tammany, learn first hand the history of Covington and Lacombe along with mysteries of the Creole tradition in lighting the graves on All Saints Day. In one of the most intense chapters, Burst shares the Voodoo religion including interviews with Voodoo Priestess Sallie Ann Glassman. The book closes with some dark humor in how New Orleans celebrates its dead with jazz funerals and post-mortem parties fit for a king.
Burst’s vivid photography and discerning eye bring the spirits and celestial wonder to life in every frame. The book features 57 stellar photos inside an enchanting trail of Louisiana's Sacred Places.
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About the Author
A born storyteller, Deborah Cunningham Burst, is a New Orleans native who enjoys writing outdoors at her home in Mandeville. An award winning writer and photographer, she left a corporate career with IBM and returned to Tulane University graduating cum laude in 2003 with a BFA in Media Arts. In her 12-year career as a freelance writer she has published more than 1,000 articles and twice as many photographs on a local, regional and national level. With a passion for travel, history and architecture she traveled throughout the south and east coast earning columns on travel and historic churches. Her commitment to detail, and driven by the artistry of photography, she began working with national magazines featuring historic homes and hotels. Recognized for mastering a vivid sense of place and stunning composition in photography, she earned a national cover photograph and feature. In 2012 Deborah won a publishing contract for a historic church book titled, Hallowed Halls of Greater New Orleans. The book shares more than ten years of work in researching and photographing churches along with interviews from passionate parishioners. The book was released in August 2013 with a foreword written by Anne Rice. It received rave reviews resulting in dozens of speaking events and books signings held across the state of Louisiana and Natchez, Mississippi. Her continued wanderlust in scripting and photographing historic landscapes brought her a new fascination with funerary architecture and tales of mystery looming amid the shadows of cemeteries. Louisiana’s Sacred Places: Churches, Cemeteries and Voodoo is the first in a series in a captivating trail of history, mystery and the blurred lines between sacred and profane. Deborah took control of the entire project publishing the 152 page book with 57 full color photos in October 2014. The co-founder of the Northshore Literary Society, Deborah has served on writing panels for both the Pirate’s Alley Faulkner Words & Music Festival and the Tennessee Williams Festival in New Orleans. She has appeared on multiple television and radio shows including both the New Orleans and Mississippi NPR station and is the recipient of 20 writing and photography awards. In addition to researching new trails for her Louisiana’s Sacred Places series, she continues her freelance business with a monthly travel column with Louisiana Road Trips magazine and a bi-weekly column with the New Orleans Advocate Newspaper.