New children's book set in Dville features local artist

Halen Doughty
The cover of the new children's book set in Donaldsonville, La.

A new children's book from Dville Press is sure to be a hit among local kids, as the story is set entirely in Donaldsonville. The book, "Cardy the Cardinal Finds a Home In Donaldsonville," follows a little bird heading south for the winter. He flies into Dville, where he has adventures with the children in the town.

Author Mary Gehman said the story gives a bird's eye view of Dville as Cardy flies along River Road and historic Donaldsonville. He admires the church bells, has lunch in the school yard, and plays hide and seek in Louisiana Square.

Children will love seeing these local landmarks come to life in the thrilling story of Cardy and his new friends. Readers will also see familiar French phrases throughout the book. When a child throws bread crumbs to Cardy, he says "Bon apetite," to which the birds happily wave "Merci!"

Gehman said she authored the book to showcase the work of local artist Alvin Batiste. She said the book contains at least 40 original paintings by Batiste. She said the book is a fun way to expose children to art and give them the chance to meet a local artist. The two plan to take the book to local schools to read the book to students. She called the work part education and part fun.

Gehman said lots of copies have already been sold. She said not only is it a huge hit among local kids, it's also a nostalgic keepsake for families who have moved away and want to give their little ones a taste of home. The hard cover books filled with glossy pages are sure to be a keepsake for generations since the heavy cover is meant to last.

For more information on Gehman and "Cardy the Cardinal Finds a Home In Donaldsonville," visit To see more of Batiste's work, check out

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