Another, far better eee-stwar
If you just want to experience New Orleans without all the sweating and beignets and staggering and hurricanes, read this:
A Confederacy of Dunces
There's a statue of Ignatius Reilly in the French Quarter somewhere, and I'm kicking myself that I didn't see it.
A movie might be made at some point, but, I guarantee you, it will be a gossamer shadow of this book's greatness.
Even if only for the pale purpose of saying you've read a Pulitzer prizewinning fiction.
Suffocate yourself laughing, slobber everywhere crying.
Just read it.