Acclaimed for her "gleeful and contagious love of language" (Los Angeles Times), Nancy Lemann evokes the tattered glamour of fading traditional Southern society like no other writer. Now she introduces the aristocratic Stewart clan of New Orleans, in particular, the self-effacing Grace, who is vacationing with her family at a rambling old resort in Virginia and mulling over her recent engagement to Monroe Collier, her ideal Southern gentleman. When she spots the crazed but brilliant Walter, she pegs him as a likely candidate for a nervous breakdown, but he determinedly attaches himself to Grace and begins to work his charms on her.
Will Grace remain true to laconic Monroe and the ideals of her homeland or will she fall for the strangely charismatic Walter? Who will gain entry into the Fiery Pantheon, Grace's personal gallery of beloved and honored heroes? In the tradition of Evelyn Waugh and Walker Percy, The Fiery Pantheon is a witty and rapturous novel about the weight of past glory, the attachment to place, and the love of a man.