TOURING LITERARY MISSISSIPPI is a treasure for any book lover born, raised, has lived or is living in the Magnolia State. While it was published in 2002, I disagree with the criticism that it's dated. "Dated" is a relative term for quasi-reference materials like this book: in computer technology, a dated reference book would be one that's a year or two old; while in literature, "dated," in my opinion, is 20-30 years. For example, I'm not sure of all the significant places and authors that the other reviewer deems missing from this book, when I consider those listed below.
This handy book breaks Mississippi down into 7 geographic "tours": Delta, Hwy 61, I-55, Yoknapatawpha, Natchez Trace, East and South MS, and Gulf Coast.
"Touring Literary Mississippi" provides excellent vignettes on sites for houses and places to note, with adequate directions (for those without a map app). Just some of the notables include the childhood homes of Walker Percy and Shelby Foote in Greenville, of Willie Morris in Yazoo City, Tennessee Williams in Clarksdale, Donna Tartt in Grenada, Beth Henley and Richard Ford in Jackson, Richard Wright and Greg Iles in Natchez; the homes of Eudora Welty and William Faulkner; William Faulkner's birthplace in Ripley; Oprah Winfrey's birthplace and childhood church in Kosciusko, the birthplace of Tennessee Williams in Columbus; the childhood church attended by Anne Moody; the later homes of Stephen Ambrose in Bay St. Louis, Barry Hannah, John Grisham and Larry Brown in Oxford. The book also gives a worthy description and brief history of literary places to visit, such as: in Oxford, the Courthouse Square, Rowan Oak and other Faulkner places of note; in Biloxi, Beauvoir, the home of Jefferson Davis (President of the Confederacy) with whom Oscar Wilde visited there in 1882, and the Old French House Restaurant mentioned in two Grisham novels; in Pascagoula, the beach house where Faulkner came to work on his first novel and brought his new bride Estelle to honeymoon, and was likely used as a basis for the beach home of the couple in Wild Palms; south of Gulfport, Ship Island, home to Fort Massachusetts, a Union prison during the Civil War, and which served as a setting in The Moviegoer by Walker Percy.
It also includes descriptions of places with not so close a literary tie like the Jim Henson Museum in Leland and the Elvis Presley birthplace in Tupelo and the Jimmie Rodgers museum in Meridian. The final notable item to mention are the book's recitations of the mentions in literature, use in movies and an overview of the literary heritage of towns like Natchez, Ocean Springs and much smaller places.