A New York Times Bestseller Oh, Florida! That name. That combination of sounds. Three simple syllables, and yet packing so many mixed messages. To some people, it’s a paradise. To others, it’s a punch line. As Oh, Florida! shows, it’s both of these and, more important, it’s a Petri dish, producing trends that end up influencing the rest of the country. Without Florida there would be no NASCAR, no Bettie Page pinups, no Glenn Beck radio rants, no USA Today, no “Stand Your Ground,” . . . you get the idea. To outsiders, Florida seems baffling. It’s a state where the voters went for Barack Obama twice, yet elected a Tea Party candidate as governor. Florida is touted as a carefree paradise, yet it’s also known for its perils-alligators, sinkholes, pythons, hurricanes, and sharks, to name a few. It attracts 90 million visitors a year, some drawn by its impressive natural beauty, others bewitched by its manmade fantasies. Oh, Florida! explores those contradictions and shows how they fit together to make this the most interesting state. It is the first book to explore the reasons why Florida is so wild and weird-and why that’s okay. Florida couldn’t be Florida without that sense of the unpredictable, unexpected, and unusual lurking behind every palm tree. But there is far more to Florida than its sideshow freakiness. Oh, Florida! explains how Florida secretly, subtly influences all the other states in the Union, both for good and for ill.
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Finalist for the National Book Award: Christine Schutt’s masterful novel—hailed by John Ashbery as “an amazing achievement”—about a remarkable little girl who comes of age, adrift, in the care of a rotating cast of indifferent relatives Alice Fivey is seven years old when her father dies, and ten when her mentally fragile mother is institutionalized. So begins the “sleepover life” for Alice. Shuttled among the homes of wealthy relatives, retainers, babysitters, and reluctant caretakers, Alice must learn their habits and adapt if she is to survive. But how is she to remain intact after the loss of her parents, whose troubled pasts are invoked to punish and manipulate her? Books help, as do kindly teachers. Set largely in the chilly Midwest, the vision of a life in Florida, first offered up by Alice’s father as a promise of good health and balmy weather, grows in significance for Alice. She is an orphan, and as such she must forge a home and an identity beyond that of her namesake: her unstable mother. Alice Fivey, consoled with reading, becomes a storyteller herself, building a home word by word in elegiac, luminous scenes that serve as evidence of the life-giving power of language. A finalist for the National Book Award, Florida is an elegant, lyrical, and dreamlike first-person portrait of a young artist in early bloom, and a hauntingly beautiful tale of survival and growth told in a unique and unforgettable voice.
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It's one giant leap for all boy-kind in Frank Cottrell Boyce's out-of-this-world story: Cosmic. Liam is too big for his boots. And his football strip. And his school blazer. But being super-sized height-wise has its advantages: he's the only eleven-year-old to ever ride the G-force-defying Cosmic rollercoaster - or to be offered the chance to drive a Porsche. Long-legged Liam makes a giant leap for boy-kind by competing with a group of adults for the chance to go into space. Is Liam the best boy for the job? Sometimes being big isn't all about being a grown-up. This edition of Cosmic includes bonus material and discussion questions from Frank Cottrell Boyce, and illustrations by Steven Lenton.
Fannie Flagg has enchanted readers with her warm, wonderful, and witty books for nearly forty years. Now this delightful eBook bundle showcases three of her classic novels—full of heart and smart and refreshing as sweet tea on a hot summer day. FRIED GREEN TOMATOES AT THE WHISTLE STOP CAFE “It’s very good, in fact, just wonderful.”—Los Angeles Times Folksy and fresh, endearing and affecting, Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe is the now-classic novel of two women in the 1980s: of gray-headed Mrs. Threadgoode telling her life story to Evelyn, who is in the sad slump of middle age. The tale Mrs. Threadgoode tells is also of two women—of the irrepressibly daredevilish tomboy Idgie and her friend Ruth—who back in the thirties ran a little place in Whistle Stop, Alabama, a Southern kind of Cafe Wobegon offering good barbecue and good coffee and all kinds of love and laughter, even an occasional murder. And as the past unfolds, the present—for Evelyn and for us—will never be quite the same again. . . . CAN'T WAIT TO GET TO HEAVEN “Funny and utterly charming.”—The Miami Herald It’s the strangest thing. One minute Elner Shimfissle is up in her tree, picking figs in Elmwood, Missouri, and the next thing she knows she is off on an adventure she never dreamed of, running into people she never in a million years expected to meet. Meanwhile, back in Elmwood Springs, Elner’s high-strung niece Norma faints and winds up in bed with a cold cloth on her head; Elner’s neighbor Verbena rushes immediately to the Bible; her truck driver friend, Luther Griggs, runs his eighteen-wheeler into a ditch; and the entire town is thrown for a loop. In this comedy-mystery, those near and dear to Elner discover something wonderful. I STILL DREAM ABOUT YOU “Undoubtedly [Flagg’s] wisest book, comic and compassionate.”—Richmond Times-Dispatch Meet Maggie Fortenberry, a still beautiful former Miss Alabama. To others, Maggie’s life seems practically perfect—she’s lovely, charming, and a successful agent at Red Mountain Realty. Still, Maggie can’t help but wonder how she wound up living a life so different from the one she dreamed of as a child. But just when things seem completely hopeless, and the secrets of Maggie’s past drive her to a radical plan to solve it all, Maggie discovers, quite by accident, that everybody, it seems, has at least one little secret. Praise for Fannie Flagg “A born storyteller.”—The New York Times Book Review “What [Flagg] writes about, time and again, are the touching, terrifying, heartbreaking, hysterical, extraordinary, everyday things that make us human.”—Southern Living “Courageous and wise.”—Houston Chronicle, on Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe “A thoroughly entertaining comic novel.”—Newsday, on Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe “The characters are endearing, the story is engaging. . . . A comforting and sometimes thought-provoking read.”—Fort Worth Star-Telegram, on Can’t Wait to Get to Heaven “A fun and rollicking Nancy Drew mystery for grown-ups.”—The Birmingham News, on I Still Dream About You