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Publisher's Summary

A brilliantly funny exploration of the Sunshine State from the man who knows it best: Pulitzer Prize winner and New York Times best-selling author Dave Barry.

We never know what will happen next in Florida. We know only that, any minute now, something will. Every few months, Dave Barry gets a call from some media person wanting to know, "What the hell is wrong with Florida?" Somehow, the state's acquired an image as a subtropical festival of stupid, and as a loyal Floridian, Dave begs to differ. Sure, there was the 2000 election. And people seem to take their pants off for no good reason. And it has flying insects the size of LeBron James. But it is a great state, and Dave is going to tell you why.

Join him as he celebrates Florida from Key West at the bottom to whatever it is that's at the top, from the Sunshine State's earliest history to the fun-fair of weirdness and gunfire ("Our motto: 'Come back! We weren't firing at you!'") that it is today. It's the most hilarious book yet from "the funniest damn writer in the whole country" (Carl Hiaasen, and he should know). By the end, you'll have to admit that whatever else you might think about Florida - you can never say it's boring.

©2016 Dave Barry (P)2016 Recorded Books

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
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  • Story

A timely book about a Swing State - Election 2000?

What made the experience of listening to Best. State. Ever. the most enjoyable?

I loved how he started off, "What makes people think, ' What's up with Florida?' I think it all started with the Election of 2000. All the other states seemed to know who they'd voted for. But Florida,....." ,..ever since then other states love to publish strange news stories about us." But I love my state."

What other book might you compare Best. State. Ever. to and why?

I laugh at all of Dave Barry's books.

Did the narration match the pace of the story?

I would have preferred if Dave Barry had read his own book.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

I visited Florida in the 90's /rented a car to explore, like Barry suggested.. Parts were very nostalgic. (The Keys are beautiful - like the Caribbean, Hemmingway's house with moss-covered trees like the Deep South, etc.)<br/>

Any additional comments?

I started to fall asleep last night listening to the "Lock and Load" machine gun firing range, for the public. I couldn't believe they'd let my friend's 11 year old try one when they visited there. So I want to listen more to see if it's true.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Funny but not side splitting

Still had moments where I laughed out loud. But he focuses too much on and bad language which I did not enjoy.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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funny and entertaining

I enjoyed this book it was a very entertaining tour of Florida. would definitely recommend it to Dave Barry fans.

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Most. Annoying. Narration. Ever.

This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

I think the book WOULD be for me, but I could get through only about an hour because the narrator was so awful. Was he not screened at all???

If you’ve listened to books by Dave Barry before, how does this one compare?

Worst narration ever.

What didn’t you like about Dick Hill’s performance?

Dick Hill sounds like he narrates bad commercials for a living. He narrated as if he's trying to be the story.

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Best. State. Ever.?

I would cut all Dick Hill's narration and start over.

Any additional comments?

I have enjoyed Dave Barry narrating his own books, but I don't think his narration is essential for my enjoyment. Dick Hill, in my opinion, is flat-out awful as a narrator. There really wasn't anyone else??

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  • Hoef
  • South Tampa Bay
  • 06-08-17

Narrator spills it for me!

While I have been a fan of Dave Barry for decades, this is my first time LISTENING to his book. I find it little short of agonizing, knowing the quality of his writing, while losing the impact through Dick Hill's narration!

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A Long-Time Fan

I was touched by the respectful way Florida tourist attractions were made fun of, which they totally deserve. Saw you last week at Fresno's Town Hall, Dave. Please come back.

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Half of a Good Book

What did you like best about Best. State. Ever.? What did you like least?

The first few chapters of this were first rate, vintage Dave Barry - skewering Florida, and I laughed out loud. Then it switched to a travelogue of South Florida tourist traps and got, honestly, boring, before turning raunchy in the last chapter or two. It would have been an excellent shorter book, but this was pretty bad and I regretted giving it as a gift before I'd finished it.

Would you recommend Best. State. Ever. to your friends? Why or why not?

No. Not one of his better books. See above.

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Very disappointing for Dave Barry lovers

Disappointing humor and annoying narrator. Good subject matter but not up to Dave Barry's talent.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Dave Barry Hooray

Enjoyed revisiting Florida, my old home state! Great trip with Dave.
Narrator was not so great.

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Hilarious book, you will laugh out loud

In typical Dave Barry style, this book was hilarious in its details. He covers some of his familiar rants (celebrity DJs) and some fresh territory (the infamous Florida Skunk Ape). This book is worth the listen...it actually made me feel a little better about our wacky country, and certainly its weirdest state.