10 Books to Get You in the Mood for Mardi Gras

It's Mardi Gras season! When I'm not out dancing in the streets with my krewe, you'll find me weaving tales of mystery, romance, and laugh-out-loud moments during my favorite time of year.

I'm not the only author who's set stories against the magical backdrop of Mardi Gras. If you need something to get you pumped for the upcoming festivities, check out these 10 books to get you in the mood for Mardi Gras!

My Best Friend's Mardi Gras Wedding by Erin Nicholas

A small town, fake relationship romantic comedy. Josh Landry is one of the hottest bartenders in New Orleans. He’s shown many a female tourist that things are definitely big and easy down here. And he’s now been celibate for a year. Because he finally met her. Yes, her. The One. But, after nothing more than a hot goodnight kiss and a promise to meet up again next year if they’re both still interested, she went home to Iowa. It’s been a long year. But now it’s Mardi Gras again and he’s ready for his happily ever after. If she shows up. *** Oh, she shows up. For her best friend’s wedding. But Tori is a terrible bridesmaid because all she can think about is her knight-in-shining-Mardi-Gras-beads from last year. Well, and because she accidentally lays a hot kiss on her BFF. Aka, the groom. Unfortunately, no one believes that it was a case of mistaken identity. So, now she has to convince everyone she has no intention of ruining the wedding. She’s going to need a crazy-about-her boyfriend ASAP. Even if he’s just faking it. Well there’s only one other person she knows in Louisiana... Josh is all in. In fact, he’s thrilled. And he’s not faking anything. But the groom isn’t faking his sudden case of cold feet either. And now Tori might have a choice to make.

License to Bite by Carrie Pulkinen

It's all fun and games until someone wakes up dead.

Governor's daughter Jane Anderson is used to getting what she wants. When a girls' trip to Mardi Gras thrusts her into the arms—and fangs—of New Orleans' hottest vampire, he gifts her with immortality, super strength, and a complexion to die for.

There's only one tiny problem. Jane faints at the sight of blood.

When Ethan Devereaux meets Jane, his cold, lifeless heart learns to beat again. Convinced she's his late fiancée reincarnated, he turns her, claiming her as his own. But when Jane wakes up dead in Ethan's attic, she's loud, sassy, and downright ornery. He doesn't know if he should kiss her or stake her, but one thing's for certain…

She is so not his long-lost love.

But Ethan turned her, so he's stuck with her. Jane has three weeks to learn the ways of the vampire and get her license, or she'll be staked. If Ethan can't help her overcome her aversion to blood, his undead life might also be on the line.

Join the supes of New Orleans Nocturnes as they lighten up the darker side of the Big Easy in this fast, steamy romantic comedy.

Absinthe Minded by Kathryn M. Hearst

Gabe Marchionni, New Orleans’ most eligible bachelor, has a problem…
…and it’s wrapped in a pink blanket.

What in the heck is the reluctant new head of a mafia family supposed to do with an infant?

For anyone else it would be simple. But with enemies around every corner, Gabe can't exactly go find the woman he dumped years ago and convince her to give him a second chance.

Not when it means putting her life in danger.

Maggie Guthrie is broke, exhausted, and raising her deceased sister’s kids. She’s also a reporter by day and desperately needs to get the scoop on one of the most illustrious families in the French Quarter, the Marchionnis…
…even if that means exposing decades of blackmail, extortion, and worse.

So when Gabe, her ex-whatever-the-heck-he-was, shows up on her doorstep with a newborn and a proposition she should refuse, Maggie knows better than to let him into her house…
...and into her life.

Especially when, falling for him again might cost her more than her heart.

Prim and Proper Fate by Tami Lund

A month ago, shapeshifter Brandon Haines betrayed his pack and his Chala. The dust has settled and he knows he’s lucky to be alive. He had his reasons—and they were justified—but he’s seen the error of his ways, and he fights for the good guys now.

Too bad they won’t let him forget his past mistakes.

Suddenly, he’s being thrust into the challenge of his life, and he has to work with the one woman he despises most in this world; the Fate named Prim. She’s sex and candy walking, he can’t get her out of his head…and now he needs her.

Because Gavin Rowan's curse has been lifted, and Prim is the only one who can re-curse him.

Otherwise, Brandon's whole damn species will be annihilated.

Love and Omens by Carrie Pulkinen

She sees the future.
He reads the past.
The present could kill them both.

Knowing how things will end before they even begin is a curse New Orleans tour guide Sydney Park has endured since she was a child. Her premonitions make surprises few and far between, and dating…

What's the point?

Reading the past in objects has caused more trouble for Blake Beaumont than he cares to admit. Opening the Museum of the Macabre is his last attempt at using his ability and his college degree to make a living.

But the artifacts he's acquired have haunting attachments that could put everyone's lives in danger.

When Blake joins forces with Sydney's tour company, he jumps at the chance to rekindle his relationship with her. She can’t help but fall for him all over again, until an ominous vision of a closed-casket funeral stops her cold.

Someone she loves is going to die.

If Sydney and Blake can't unravel the mystery, their haunted pasts will eclipse any chance of a future.

If you like strong heroines and haunting mystery, you'll love this steamy, spellbinding tale of romance during Mardi Gras in the Big Easy.

Until Death by Cynthia Eden

When everyone wears a mask, who can you trust? And who can you love?

When Ivy DuLane witnesses a murder during the madness of Mardi Gras, she enters a deadly cat and mouse game with the killer. The city has gone wild with the annual celebration, and Ivy has to rely on sexy homicide detective—and her ex-lover—Bennett Morgan for help. But with every moment that passes, the killer grows bolder, and the body count starts to rise. It soon becomes very hard to tell the innocent from the guilty…especially since Bennett is keeping dark secrets of his own.

Author’s Note: Get ready for the dangerous times to roll…UNTIL DEATH is a hot romantic suspense with a fierce hero, a heroine who will jump from a Mardi Gras float any day of the week, and a dark killer who just will not stop.

Rescued by a Kiss by Colleen Mooney

One kiss and her world turns upside down...

Can she solve the case that threatens his life? Brandy Alexander never thought living in the Big Easy could feel so dull. And as she waits painfully for her long-time cop boyfriend to propose, she’s not sure their hearts are beating to the same tune.

Then, she did what lots of young women do at parades, and that is to exchange a kiss from a tuxedoed man in a walking club for a flower ...

But, she kissed a handsome stranger that summoned her into the street and electric thrills turn to shock when he’s shot right before her eyes. His gasping request haunts her as she watches in horror as he's whisked away by an ambulance.

Brandy races to track down the mysterious person his only words asked of her...

The clues take her from Bourbon Street’s bright lights into a dark den of corruption. She’ll have to put everything on the line to prevent her charming man from eating another bullet.

Can Brandy survive her city’s greedy criminals and save this charismatic man she feels a romantic connection with?

If you like authentic settings, jazzy characters, and whip-smart dialogue, then you’ll love Colleen Mooney’s quirky story.

Sign Steal Deliver by Carrie Pulkinen

He may be the god of thieves, but he's not ready for the one who steals his heart.

Calico shifter Kat Gataki has a plan. All she has to do is swipe the key to the underworld so she can get down to Elysium and apologize to her sister for being a royal witch with a capital B.

It should be a piece of cake for a trained cat burglar like herself, but there’s one slight problem. The owner of said key happens to be Hermes…as in…the smoldering hot god from Olympus.

And no one steals from the god of thieves.

That’s what Hermes likes to believe until a trip to Mardi Gras introduces him to the most alluring cat burglar he’s ever seen.

Hermes wastes no time falling head over winged sandals for Kat, but following his heart soon lands him in a mess of trouble that only the Fates could see coming.

Kat has stolen both his key and his heart, and he only has twelve hours to find her. If he fails, they'll both be spending eternity in the underworld.

If you like quirky humor and heroes with heart, you'll love this Greek gods inspired paranormal romantic comedy!

Here for It by Melanie Jacobson

Sparks fly when LA glitz meets New Orleans grit...

When Anneke flits into town between high fashion shoots to help her best friend open his new jazz club, the last thing she's looking for is a reason to stay. She'll explore the city, make her appearances, and then she's off to the next adventure. Until she realizes that her massive online crush is the proprietor of a dusty old record shop in town...

At twenty-nine, Jonah has already been there, done that, and he's over it. Fame and fortune? Ha. Keep it. He's had a front row seat his whole life to the way it changes people. Not even the flirty supermodel he keeps crossing paths with can change his mind...

Until Jonah discovers that Anneke is the woman he's been half in love with for months already. But...she's everything he's never wanted. Isn't she?

This laugh out loud romantic comedy sizzles with chemistry and the magic of a Mardi Gras backdrop to this adorable opposites attract story from USA Today bestseller Melanie Jacobson!

Float: Enchanted Horse Retold by Demelza Carlton

According to the Author: This one is historical, set during Carnival, which was the predeccessor to our modern Mardi Gras.

A brave knight. A lady beset by suitors. An enchanted horse that topples cities.

Once upon a time...
Disgraced knight Sir Godfrey would do anything to regain his honour. So when the famed Trojan Horse appears at court, Sir Godfrey volunteers to lead a crusade on the magical beast.
Lady Penelope is sick of life at a convent, waiting for her father to decide who she shall marry. So when a knight appears in the convent garden with a magic horse, she jumps at the chance to escape.
The enchanted horse may have ended one war, but with Penelope missing, it may be about to start another.
Can a knight and his lady stop history repeating?