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Louis Bayard

Born: 1963 in Albuquerque, New Mexico
Connection to Illinois: Bayard received a master's degree in journalism from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University in Evanston.

Biography: Louis Bayard teaches fiction writing at George Washington University and lives in Washington DC.

  • Jackie & Me Best Books of Summer 2022, People. Starred Reviews - Kirkus and Booklist
  • Courting Mr. Lincoln A Washington Post Bestseller. A May Indie Next Pick. An Apple Books Best of the Month for April. A People Magazine Best Book of the Week.
  • The Pale Blue Eye Starred Review - Kirkus and Publishers Weekly.
  • The School of Night Starred Review - Publishers Weekly and Library Journal
  • The Black Tower Starred Review - Booklist and Publishers Weekly

Primary Literary Genre(s): Fiction

Primary Audience(s): Adult readers


Selected Titles

Courting Mr. Lincoln
ISBN: 1616208473 OCLC:

Algonquin Books 2019

A miracle; an exquisite story exquisitely told ... If you love Jane Austen, or Hamilton, or fiction--of any era--that transports and transforms in equal measure, look no further. --A.J. Finn, bestselling author of The Woman in the Window. From the prizewinning author of Mr. Timothy and The Pale Blue Eye comes Courting Mr. Lincoln, the page-turning and surprising story of a young Abraham Lincoln and the two people who loved him best: a young, marriageable Mary Todd and Lincoln's best friend, Joshua Speed. When sparky and independent Mary Todd arrives in Springfield, Illinois, in the 1840s to live with her sister, who is determined to find Mary a husband, she is astonished to find herself drawn to an awkward, melancholic lawyer with a gift for oratory. The two share ambition, an obsession with politics--and a need to be suitably married off. Always at Lincoln's side, however, is the charming Joshua Speed, a shopkeeper who became his mentor in society, loyal friend, roommate--and possible lover. Told in alternating chapters from the points of view of Todd and Speed, this witty, psychologically astute, and brilliantly plotted novel follows the threesome during Todd and Lincoln's tumultuous courtship, with all the suspense and delight of the best Jane Austen novels. Historians have long speculated that Lincoln and Speed had a romantic relationship, and here Bayard explores that forbidden possibility with deep empathy. Rich with both period detail and contemporary insight, Courting Mr. Lincoln offers smart storytelling at the highest level.

Fool's Errand
ISBN: 1555834949 OCLC: Los Angeles :

Alyson Books Los Angeles : 2000

A novel on gay urban culture featuring a homosexual who is smitten by a man he meets during a Sunday brunch. The hero, Patrick Beaton of Washington, sets out to find the object of his desire, knowing only the man's first name.

Jackie & Me
ISBN: 1643750356 OCLC:

Algonquin Books 2022

A historical novel depicting a naïve, career-girl version of Jackie Kennedy and her iconic marriage-in-the-making to an elusive John F. Kennedy, narrated by Jack's best friend and fixer, Lem Billings --

Mr. Timothy
ISBN: 0060534214 OCLC: New York :

Harper New York : 2003

Seeking to gain independence from his benefactor, Ebenezer Scrooge, Timothy Cratchit loses himself in the underworld of 1860s London, where the discovery of two murdered girls prompts him to protect a third would-be victim.

Roosevelt's Beast
ISBN: 0805090703 OCLC:

Henry Holt 2014

1914. Brazil's Rio da Dúvida, the River of Doubt. Theodore Roosevelt, his son Kermit, and the other members of the now-ravaged Roosevelt-Rondon scientific expedition are traveling deeper and deeper into the jungle to chart an unexplored river in the heart of the wild Amazon. Fighting off malaria and running short of food, Kermit and Teddy break with the group to hunt a long-overdue meal and are kidnapped by a tribe of cannibals: the Cinta Larga. In exchange for their freedom, father and son must find and kill a never-before-seen beast that plagues the tribe. A beast so ferocious it leaves only a shell of its prey behind. But what are the origins of this beast, and how do they escape its brutal wrath? Roosevelt's Beast is a story of the impossible things that become possible when civilization is miles away, when the mind plays tricks on itself, and when old family secrets refuse to stay buried.

The Black Tower
ISBN: 0061704423 OCLC:

Morrow 2008

The Pale Blue Eye
ISBN: 0060733977 OCLC: New York :

Harper New York : 2006

In 1830, a young cadet's body is discovered at West Point Academy, forcing the Academy to call on the services of retired detective Augustus Landor, who in turn draws on the knowledge of a young cadet named Edgar Allan Poe.

The School of Night
ISBN: 080509069X OCLC: New York :

Henry Holt New York : 2011

Centuries after the founding of a scholarly organization that covertly discussed religion, science, and the black arts, disgraced Elizabethan scholar Henry Cavendish searches for a missing letter than may prove the group's existence and contain the formula for alchemy.