Thank you for helping city, Mr. Iles

Published 12:37 am Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Today, a seemingly unlikely promoter of Natchez tourism will begin shouting the city’s name all over the country in bookstores, airports and anywhere else where Amazon’s long arm can reach.

Fictional lawyer Penn Cage and crew enthrall fiction lovers from all over as the Southern drama unfolds with each page, the plot’s mysteries taking center stage with our hometown as the backdrop.

Written by Natchez author Greg Iles, “Mississippi Blood,” the final of a trilogy of books, will hit bookstands today.

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With its arrival will likely come a renewed interest among Iles’ fans to visit the place that may seem fictional in the book, but is very much real to residents and visitors alike.

Iles’ trilogy has done much to put Natchez on the minds of many thousands of his fans. But even more publicity could occur if Iles’ works wind up as a television series, as discussed recently.

Iles has been an outspoken advocate for Natchez, and we applaud him for his work to that end.

We hope Iles’ characters continue to lure curious readers — and potentially TV watchers — to Natchez.

While some of the happenings in Iles’ books are not “G-rated,” and the subject matter isn’t exactly what the chamber of commerce may order up for marketing, that’s missing the point. These are books for grown-ups, not for children, and any publicity before a national audience is good for Natchez.

Thanks for helping your town, Mr. Iles.