Oh, Florida!: How America’s Weirdest State Influences the Rest of the Country
When someone says “Florida,” it conjures an image in your head, whether it’s The Golden Girls, Disney, brain-dead criminals, or Dave Barry-style strangeness. But the Sunshine State is much more than the weird and wacky news we’ve come to expect, and Oh, Florida! is a perfect microcosm of Florida in all its varied and curious facets.
Yes, this includes plenty of the nonsense we’ve come to expect when Florida is mentioned, as well as cons, scams, crooks, and cheats. But it also includes eye-opening historical facts–like Florida welcoming the first schools in the Americas–as well as a shameful past of anti-civil rights activities, like Anita Bryant’s embarrassing crusade against gay parents and teachers or the violent subjugation of protests for desegregation.
At points, the book is funny, thought-provoking, and infuriating, sometimes all at once, and it’s a credit to Pittman and his encyclopedic knowledge of the state and its history that readers accept the shockingly disturbing and frustrating alongside the shockingly silly.
Oh, Florida! reminds us to always look beneath the surface; there could be crocs or treasure to be found.
St. Martin's Press