Best. State. Ever. by Dave Barry

Dave Barry is consistently entertaining and his humor is in fine form in Best. State. Ever. Dave dives right into the eccentricities and foibles of his home state of Florida. Even as he revels in the absurdities, his love of the state shines through.

Barry points out that many critics of Florida come from places that also do ridiculous things, but admits that Florida’s reputation is well-earned. He interestingly points out the change that Florida underwent, both in real terms and reputation, when Disneyworld opened in the early 1970’s. This fueled a massive influx of tourists as well as a stream of retirees that has continued pretty much unabated ever since.

In Best. State. Ever. Dave tours a mermaid attraction, hunts for the legendary skunk ape, and visits a hot night club, a clothing optional bar, a gun range, and one of the country’s largest (and arguably most sexually active) retirement communities.  Dave brings the same irreverent and salient observations to all these venues. His dry humor works especially well because the ridiculousness of these places usually speaks for itself.

The audio version of this book is narrated by Dick Hill. The verbal delivery of humor writing is as much dependent on timing and cadence as it is on the language. The narrator and the material in this case were not as well-matched as they could have been.

Dave Barry always manages to be entertaining and Best. State. Ever. is now different. This book is a quick read (or listen at under 5 hours) and is certain to please his many fans.

I was fortunate to receive an advance copy of this audiobook.

Description: 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 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.

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