In the tradition of the modern classics The Tender Bar by J.R. Moehringer and The Liars’ Club by Mary Karr, Blaine Lourd’s meaningful debut Born on the Bayou is a powerful gothic memoir set in the bayous and oil towns of 1970s Louisiana.
In honest, confessional prose, Born on the Bayou—a rollercoaster rags-to-riches story—transports us to a pocket of the South where Lourd learns how to be a man from the two people he looks up to the most: his larger-than-life father, “Puffer,” a prominent figure in the oil business, and his successful older brother, Bryan. With an eye turned perpetually toward the gruff and distant Puffer, Lourd illustrates how those closest to us can cause the most hurt, even as we seek their approval.
Whether he’s learning how to skin a duck at age ten, enjoying his first beer at thirteen, or detailing the finer points of ride-on lawn mowing, Lourd gets to the heart of being a Southerner with rawness and grace. From his early childhood through his eventual pilgrimage to the West Coast, he beautifully details what it means to have tangible roots to a place so ingrained it is a part of your own being.
From barreling down the low country roads in a shiny Thunderbird to chasing women and learning to be a gentleman, Born on the Bayou is one man’s struggle against the forces of family love, loyalty and obligation, and the ties that keep us tethered to our roots no matter how far we run.
About the Author
Blaine Lourd was born and raised in New Iberia, Louisiana. He now resides in California with his wife and three sons and works in the finance industry. Born on the Bayou is his first book.
“As the youngest brother and son of a father whom I respected, feared, and idolized, I know well the rights of passage Blaine writes about: We don’t really become men in our fathers eyes UNTIL we buck them and go our own way. Hard, scary and at times unfair, it works. Blaine Lourd tells a personal story that a lot of sons and little brothers know well. A story that a lot of us wouldn't be where we are today without."
— Matthew McConaughey
“With affection and sympathy for his father, his mother, and the ways of the South…[Blaine Lourd] writes with…plenty of heart and intelligence.”
— Kirkus Reviews
"[A] sensitive and funny memoir...Lourd effectively recalls the halcyon days of a man who proudly defined himself as a 'coonass'."
— Publisher's Weekly
“A corker of a tale about growing up in Cajun country…thoroughly engrossing.”
— People Magazine
This witty, evocative memoir puts a vivid Southern spin on the classic rags-to-riches tale. Lourd recalls his Louisiana upbringing and life with his father, “Puffer,” a magnetic, engaging salesman who helps the author find himself.
— Entertainment Weekly
"An inspiring read for just about anyone."