Author Michael Kinnett had a successful booksigning Saturday of his new historical novel, “Apalachicola Pearl” at the Apalachicola Center for History, Culture and the Arts. Kinnett, a park ranger at the Orman House Historic State Park, penned a tale set in Apalachicola during the Civil War, featuring a local street urchin, LaRaela Retsyo Agnusdei, better known as Pearl, and her unusual friendship with Mike Kohler, an employee of the Customs House.

Those pictured in the photo at xxxxx are, from left, Kinnett’s granddaughter, Olivia Hurt, Kinnett, and Bobbie Marshall, second from right, and her friend Mary Agnes Kilbourn Stephens, both from Port St. Joe. Marshall’s mom, Ida Speed, lived in the Orman House when she was a young girl, taken in by Sadie Orman, her aunt by marriage. Orman married Marshall’s great-uncle, James Fenimore Cooper Griggs. “They were very good to my mother,” said Marshall.

In photo at left, Kinnett’s daughter Jenny Blaszczyk, a caterer known as the Kitchen Witch, shows off a plate of cupcakes that were among her creations for the afternoon. Each cupcake featured a tiny likeness of the book, made from edible icing paper.

In addition to signing books for a steady stream of visitors, Kinnett read a selection from his new work, which is available at Downtown Books. – by DAVID ADLERSTEIN