Over its long history, Florida has been many things: a native realm protected by geography; a wilderness that ruined Spanish conquistadors; a place to start over; "god's waiting room". With a native population as high as 900,000 (who all died), it became a pestilential backwater with a few thousand inhabitants, but today is our fourth most populous state, with 19 million. The site of vicious racial violence, including massacres, slavery, and the roll-back of Reconstruction, Florida is now one of our most diverse states, a dynamic multicultural place with an essential role in 21st century America.
However, the remarkable story of Florida has been distorted and whitewashed. In Finding Florida: The True History of the Sunshine State, journalist T. D. Allman reclaims this remarkable history from the mythologizers, apologists, and boosters.
Allman traces the discovery, exploration, and settlement of Florida, its transformation from a swamp to a paradise. Palm Beach, Key West, Miami, Tampa, and Orlando boomed, fortunes were won and lost, land was stolen and flipped, and millions arrived.
The product of a decade of research and writing, Finding Florida is a highly original, stylish, and masterful work, the first modern comprehensive history of this fascinating place.
©2013 T. D. Allman. Recorded by arrangement with Grove/Atlantic, Inc. (P)2013 Audible, Inc.
I have listened to this book over 3 times since I bought it a few weeks ago. I listened before a recent to trip to Northern Florida, again while on the trip, and again when I came home. It has fascinating details about the state history and touches on many aspects: ethnic and race relations, politics, skirmishes, geology, cultural history, geography, tourism, etc. It also focuses on different parts of the state so you get good representation. Good for general listening as well as for trips.
Someone less glib and sarcastic
Disappointment and anger.
The rabbid bias that the author showed in the last third of the book raised doubts as to whether one could trust the material in the first two thirds. In the few incidents in which the author commented on matters I was familiar with, the facts were incorrect. This is good raw meat for any angry rabble raiser with an axe to grind in today's world.
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