The best books about Florida

Who picked these books? Meet our 141 experts.

141 authors created a book list connected to Florida, and here are their favorite Florida books.
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Snow Globe

By Georgia Beers,

Book cover of Snow Globe

Mavis Applewater Author Of Home For The Holidays

From the list on holiday romance.

Who am I?

I am an award winning author who loves a good romance. I love when two unlikely people meet under challenging circumstance. Bringing these two characters together has been the basis of all fourteen of my books. Home For The Holidays took a series of short stories and blended two of my favorite events finding love and the holidays. 

Mavis' book list on holiday romance

Discover why each book is one of Mavis' favorite books.

Why did Mavis love this book?

In this holiday romance presented by Georgia Beers, Mackenzie Campbell is planning the perfect holiday wedding. Everything is on track until her fiancé dumps her. Shattered and confused she decides to go on her honeymoon. She enlists her best friend Allison to go along with her. Shedding the cold weather, they head to Florida. Kenzie doesn’t realize that the adventure is about to begin.

By Georgia Beers,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Snow Globe as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Mackenzie Campbell has no idea her life is about to fall apart. She’s bright and attractive with a good job, a comfortable home and an impending Christmas wedding she’s been planning for months. So when her girlfriend bails less than two weeks before the nuptials, Kenzie’s picture perfect Christmas world begins to crumble around her.

Determined to hold on to at least some shred of her dignity, Kenzie snags her best friend, Allison, and flees the cold of the Northeast to take the honeymoon anyway. The Rainbow’s Edge is an enormous LGBT resort in Southern Florida, and its atmosphere of…


Native Tongue

By Carl Hiaasen,

Book cover of Native Tongue

Richard Audry Author Of The Karma of King Harald

From the list on mysteries to tickle your funny bone.

Who am I?

Since I was a kid, I've devoured books. But I have to be perfectly honest here and confess that my taste has always run to genre fiction. Mystery. Science fiction. Adventure. Fantasy. Suspense. That sort of thing. I’ve never been one for “serious” literature that addresses the miseries of modern life. Non-fiction, as well, is rarely on my reading docket. I prefer action…intrigue…humor. So when I started writing novels, that’s where I went. There are my three canine cozy mysteries, the first of which is noted below; and my historical mystery series. Under my real name, D. R. Martin, I wrote a ghost adventure trilogy. 

Richard's book list on mysteries to tickle your funny bone

Discover why each book is one of Richard's favorite books.

Why did Richard love this book?

If rolling on the floor laughing your ass off is your thing, then Carl Hiaasen is for you. This was my entry into whack-job Florida crime capers, and it still puts me in stitches.

The carousel of nuttiness starts spinning when two rare “blue-tongued voles” are nicked from Amazing Kingdom of Thrills, a low-rent theme park. Bouncing off each other is a crowd of madcap and/or menacing characters. The racketeer park owner. The two boneheaded thieves. An enviro-radical granny. An oversexed dolphin. A security chief hopped up on steroids. An actress who plays a goofy park critter. A gonzo former Florida governor turned eco-guerrilla. And, as the only normal person in sight, an ex-journo PR flak. Now, just climb aboard and hang on.

By Carl Hiaasen,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Native Tongue as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From the New York Times bestselling author comes a novel in which dedicated, if somewhat demented, environmentalists battle sleazy real estate developers in the Florida Keys.

"Rips, zips, hurtles, keeping us turning the pages at breakfinger pace." —New York Times Book Review

When the precious clue-tongued mango voles at the Amazing Kingdom of Thrills on North Key Largo are stolen by heartless, ruthless thugs, Joe Winder wants to uncover why, and find the voles. Joe is lately a PR man for the Amazing Kingdom theme park, but now that the voles are gone, Winder is dragged along in their wake…


Here in the Real World

By Sara Pennypacker,

Book cover of Here in the Real World

Christina Uss Author Of The Adventures of a Girl Called Bicycle

From the list on powerful introverts.

Who am I?

Every one of my books is centered around characters finding a place where they can be fully, unapologetically, joyfully themselves. If you had asked my child self where my happy place was, I would have told you it was my room, empty of other people but full of books. I am very friendly and would love to meet you, but I also delight in solitude, and my imagination sparks and cartwheels when I am quiet. It turns out there’s a word for this inborn trait of mine: introversion. I’m always looking for stories that celebrate the strengths of us quietly powerful introverts. 

Christina's book list on powerful introverts

Discover why each book is one of Christina's favorite books.

Why did Christina love this book?

I felt so much kinship with Ware, the introverted hero of this story, I kept reading out loud to my family the things he said and thought and felt. When Ware’s parents tell him he’ll need to spend the summer at forced-group-togetherness Rec camp, I moaned in horrified sympathy. When they tell him he’ll temporarily have to live in the glassed-in back porch, I wailed with Ware, “It’s not a room if it doesn’t have walls!” I was over the moon when Ware discovers a way to navigate his life so his needs are met. 

By Sara Pennypacker,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Here in the Real World as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From the author of the highly acclaimed, New York Times bestselling novel Pax comes a gorgeous and moving middle grade novel that is an ode to introverts, dreamers, and misfits everywhere.

Ware can’t wait to spend summer “off in his own world”—dreaming of knights in the Middle Ages and generally being left alone. But then his parents sign him up for dreaded Rec camp, where he must endure Meaningful Social Interaction and whatever activities so-called “normal” kids do.

On his first day Ware meets Jolene, a tough, secretive girl planting a garden in the rubble of an abandoned church next…


Low Tide

By Dawn Lee McKenna,

Book cover of Low Tide

Don Rich Author Of Coastal Jury

From the list on coastal mystery and adventure.

Who am I?

I’m an entrepreneur who was born literally within sight of the Intracoastal Waterway in South Florida. Got my first boat (a dinghy) when I was six. I used to drive an airboat on Lake Okeechobee and learned to fly back when I was a teenager. Since then, I’ve flown over a dozen different types of planes and even a helicopter. As a kid, I spent a lot of time in the Bahamas, Virgin Islands, and the Antilles. In my late teens I worked on various private sportfishing boats in Florida, Georgia, and the Bahamas. With this much time spent on, in, under, or around the water, I was destined to write coastal novels. 

Don's book list on coastal mystery and adventure

Discover why each book is one of Don's favorite books.

Why did Don love this book?

Dawn Lee was a friend and an inspiration to me. Cancer took her from us way too soon, but she left behind a large legacy of great books that were set on the Gulf coast in the panhandle of Florida. Low Tide is the first book in her Forgotten Coast Florida Suspense series which launched her into the bestseller ranks. If you ask anyone who’s read her what makes her writing so special, they’ll all tell you it’s her uniquely crafted characters. The plots and the twists of her stories are top-notch as well, but the characters are simply amazing.

By Dawn Lee McKenna,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Low Tide as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In Apalachicola, Florida, sinister things are afoot, as sinister things tend to be.Lt. Maggie Redmond is called to a crime scene on St. George Island, where she is met with the body of Gregory Boudreaux. The medical examiner calls it a suicide, but no one knows that Maggie has a horrible connection to the dead man.When Gregory’s uncle, Bennett Boudreaux, the richest and scariest man in town, takes a sudden interest in Maggie, people start to wonder, Maggie included. Maggie knows he may suspect her of killing his nephew, but she finds herself slowly drawn to the man. As Maggie…


Book cover of Getting Old Is Criminal

Terrie Farley Moran Author Of Murder, She Wrote: Killer on the Court

From the list on cozy mysteries featuring sleuths of a certain age.

Who am I?

My parents were avid readers and mysteries were a perennial favorite for all of us. By my early teens I moved from Judy Bolton and Nancy Drew to the Golden Age of mystery writers such as Agatha Christie and Mary Roberts Rinehart. Clearly addicted to mysteries without undue violence or gore, I discovered some wonderful television series as well. It won’t surprise you to learn that my favorite is Murder, She Wrote. 

Terrie's book list on cozy mysteries featuring sleuths of a certain age

Discover why each book is one of Terrie's favorite books.

Why did Terrie love this book?

Getting Old is Criminal by Rita Lakin is the third of seven books in the Gladdy Gold series and my personal favorite. How can I not love an amateur detective whose motto is “Never trust anyone under seventy-five”? One minute Gladdy is soaking in a hot tub on a romantic getaway with her new boyfriend, the next she is called to the bedside of a sick friend, who is not so sick after all and in a flash someone hires her to investigate the man he believes may have killed his mother. During the investigation, Gladdy’s sister Evvie begins to fall for the suspected killer. Now, aren’t you dying to know more?

By Rita Lakin,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Getting Old Is Criminal as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Gladdy Gold Mystery #3

"The Golden Girls play Nancy Drew in their own funny and creative ways...colorful and Meshugeneh.”—Mystery Scene

Gladdy Gold’s exotic vacation has reached a pinnacle: a romantic soak in a hot tub with the man she adores, far from Florida and her nosy neighbors…until an urgent message concerning the safety of her best friends sends her running home. Now, her idyll is ony a memory, her would-be-beau, Jack, is furious, and not only are the girls of the Gladdy Gold Detective Agency alive and well—they’re onto a hot new murder case.

Is a suave senior Romeo to…


Book cover of Travels Through North and South Carolina, Georgia, East and West Florida, the Cherokee Country, the Extensive Territories of the Muscogulges or Creek Confederacy, and the Country of the Chactaws

John Nolt Author Of A Land Imperiled: The Declining Health of the Southern Appalachian Bioregion

From the list on loss and hope in the southern Appalachian environment.

Who am I?

I moved from Ohio to southern Appalachia in 1978 to take a temporary job teaching philosophy at the University of Tennessee.  I hadn’t planned to stay, but I fell in love with the mountains. Recently I retired after a fruitful 44-year career here. Concern for this land and for my children and grandchildren led me to environmental activism and shifted my teaching and writing from mathematical logic to environmental and intergenerational ethics. Eventually I wrote or edited four books on environmental matters (two specifically on the southern Appalachian environment) in addition to three on logic and (most recently) a tome on the tricky topic of incomparable values.

John's book list on loss and hope in the southern Appalachian environment

Discover why each book is one of John's favorite books.

Why did John love this book?

It rings with awe-struck musings on Bartram’s explorations, begun just before the American revolution, of the lush and bountiful landscapes of the southern British colonies. Bartram’s effusive descriptions of the astonishingly profuse flora and fauna, replete with taxonomic names, provide a baseline for gauging the steep ecological declines that followed. The Penguin edition includes an appreciative introduction by American writer James Dickey, best known for his novel Deliverance.

By William Bartram,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Travels Through North and South Carolina, Georgia, East and West Florida, the Cherokee Country, the Extensive Territories of the Muscogulges or Creek Confederacy, and the Country of the Chactaws as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

At the request of Dr. Fothergill, of London, to search the Floridas, and the western parts of Carolina and Georgia, for the discovery of rare and useful productions of nature, chiefly in the vegetable kingdom; in April, 1773, I embarked for Charleston, South Carolina, on board the brigantine Charleston Packet, Captain Wright, the brig——, Captain Mason, being in company with us, and bound to the same port. We had a pleasant run down the Delaware, 150 miles to Cape Henlopen, the two vessels entering the Atlantic together. For the first twenty-four hours, we had a prosperous gale, and were cheerful…


Florida

By Lauren Groff,

Book cover of Florida

Lesley Pratt Bannatyne Author Of Unaccustomed to Grace

From the list on short story collections by women.

Who am I?

Whenever I take on a new short story project, I read other writers to admire them, study them, and be inspired by them; it’s like talking with old friends. These five books took me through the heart and soul of what it is to be or to have a mother, to be or to have children, to love or to lose love, to maintain the rituals and magic of family or let them go. Although I believe men can write female characters and women can write males, I really appreciate the fine-tuned ear for the nuances of motherhood, womanhood, and relationships I find in collections written by women about women.

Lesley's book list on short story collections by women

Discover why each book is one of Lesley's favorite books.

Why did Lesley love this book?

Humidity, rain, heat, and danger saturate this book: you can feel it. In “Midnight Zone,” a young mother has to summon all her power to protect her children from the panther that lurks outside in the dark. What could be a story about one woman dealing with her own limitations becomes one about the power and danger of mother-love. Groff’s book is filled with characters like this: steely, honest, and flawed, all at once. Above all, her women and children are much stronger and more resilient than you think. 

By Lauren Groff,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Florida as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

FINALIST FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK AWARD 

WINNER OF THE STORY PRIZE

ONE OF NPR'S BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR

From the universally acclaimed, New York Times bestselling author of Fates and Furies and Matrix

Florida is a "superlative" book (Boston Globe), "frequently funny" (San Francisco Chronicle), "brooding, inventive and often moving" (NPR Fresh Air) --as Groff is recognized as "Florida's unofficial poet laureate, as Joan Didion was for California." (Washington Post)

In her thrilling new book, Lauren Groff brings the reader into a physical world that is at once domestic and wild—a place where the hazards of the natural world…


The Yearling

By Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings,

Book cover of The Yearling

Ronnie Blair Author Of Eisenhower Babies: Growing Up on Moonshots, Comic Books, and Black-and-White TV

From the list on evoking the magic (and miseries) of childhood.

Who am I?

Growing up in a Kentucky coal-mining community, I enjoyed reading about the lives of other people and how their experiences differed from mine. I read biographies of famous people, such as Paul Revere or Stephen Foster, and an occasional memoir, such as Harlan Ellison writing about infiltrating a juvenile gang or David Gerrold revealing how he came to write for Star Trek. Fiction also took me to places that I had never seen. But something about a coming-of-age tale especially resonated with me and I hope these recommendations will help you make that same connection with how others have navigated the magic and miseries of childhood. 

Ronnie's book list on evoking the magic (and miseries) of childhood

Discover why each book is one of Ronnie's favorite books.

Why did Ronnie love this book?

My only fiction pick, this classic novel set in Florida in the 1870s is about 12-year-old Jody Baxter and his friendship with a fawn. I became familiar with this coming-of-age tale in an unusual way. In seventh grade, I was on a school speech team, and one of the other kids competed in the storytelling competition using an excerpt from The Yearling. That excerpt included the moment when Jody’s father talks to him about becoming a man: “What’s he to do when he gits knocked down? Why, take it for his share and go on.” That phrase stuck with me, and was even more powerful years later when I read the novel in its entirety and learned all that Jody had gone through by the time he and his father reached that moment.

By Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Yearling as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The Yearling is a novel by Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings published in March 1938. It has been translated into Spanish, Chinese, French, Japanese, German, Italian, Russian and 22 other languages. It won the 1939 Pulitzer Prize for the Novel.
Rawlings's editor was Maxwell Perkins, who also worked with F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, and other literary luminaries. She had submitted several projects to Perkins for his review, and he rejected them all. He advised her to write about what she knew from her own life, and The Yearling was the result.


The Wilder Heart of Florida

By Jack E. Davis (editor), Leslie K. Poole (editor),

Book cover of The Wilder Heart of Florida

Bruce Hunt Author Of Visiting Small-Town Florida

From the list on for Florida-philes.

Who am I?

Bruce Hunt is a native Floridian writer and photographer. He has authored eleven Florida travel and history books, and over the last three decades has written and photographed hundreds of articles for magazines and newspapers. For five years he was a regular feature writer and photographer for DuPont Registry Tampa Bay Magazine. His work has also appeared in The St. Petersburg Times (Tampa Bay Times), Tampa Tribune, The Visit Tampa Bay Official Visitors Guide, Backpacker Magazine, Rock & Ice Magazine, Skydiving Magazine, Florida Trend Magazine, Celebrity Car Magazine, Coastal Living Magazine, and Southern Living Magazine, among others.

Bruce's book list on for Florida-philes

Discover why each book is one of Bruce's favorite books.

Why did Bruce love this book?

The Wilder Heart of Florida is a marvelous collection of essays on wild and natural Florida, selected and edited by Dr. Leslie Poole, Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies and History at Rollins College, and Dr. Jack Davis, Professor of History at the University of Florida. It is a second volume to the renowned 1999 The Wild Heart of Florida, and features insightful chapters penned by experts on real Florida, like Cynthia Barnett, Lauren Groff, Totch Brown, Lars Anderson, Marjory Stoneman Douglas, Clay Henderson, as well as Jack Davis, and Leslie Poole, among others.

By Jack E. Davis (editor), Leslie K. Poole (editor),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Wilder Heart of Florida as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Fall under the spell of Florida's natural environment

In this captivating collection, Florida's most notable authors, poets, and environmentalists take readers on a journey through the natural wonders of the state. Continuing in the legacy of the beloved classic The Wild Heart of Florida, this book features thirty-four pieces by a new slate of well-known and emerging writers.

In these pages, New York Times bestselling author Lauren Groff describes the beauty of Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park. Environmental writer Cynthia Barnett listens to seashells on Sanibel Island. Legendary journalist Marjory Stoneman Douglas records the sights and sounds of the Everglades…


Running

By Natalia Sylvester,

Book cover of Running

Aya de Leon Author Of A Spy in the Struggle

From the list on action to solve the climate crisis.

Who am I?

I am obsessed with books about people fighting for social justice—particularly around racism and the climate crisis (which are definitely interconnected). I have two main approaches: people with longstanding commitments to making change who take increasingly bold steps to fight for justice, and the accidental activists, who had no intention of taking on injustice, but found themselves in unexpected circumstances and rose to the occasion. I write stories about people—mostly women of color—who are part of teams and movements who fight to make the world right, and win. I think of myself as trying to create roadmaps for us to win in the fight against racism and the climate crisis in the real world.

Aya's book list on action to solve the climate crisis

Discover why each book is one of Aya's favorite books.

Why did Aya love this book?

When fifteen-year-old Cuban American Mariana Ruiz’s father runs for president, Mari starts to see him with new eyes. Throughout his successful political career, he has always had his daughter’s vote, but the campaign brings a whole new level of scrutiny to Mariana and the rest of her Cuban American family. As Mari begins to learn about the details of her father’s political positions—particularly some very questionable stances on the environment— she realizes that her father is not the man she thought he was. As the climate crisis escalates around them in Florida, she begins to connect with activist teens.

I love how this novel traces a young woman’s political awakening, and how sometimes standing up for what you believe in begins with standing up to your family.

By Natalia Sylvester,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Running as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

When fifteen-year-old Cuban American Mariana Ruiz's father runs for president, Mari starts to see him with new eyes. A novel about waking up and standing up, and what happens when you stop seeing your dad as your hero - while the whole country is watching. In this thoughtful, authentic, humorous, and gorgeously written novel about privacy, waking up, and speaking up, Senator Anthony Ruiz is running for president. Throughout his successful political career he has always had his daughter's vote, but a presidential campaign brings a whole new level of scrutiny to sheltered fifteen-year-old Mariana and the rest of her…


The Dressage Chronicles

By Karen McGoldrick,

Book cover of The Dressage Chronicles

Genevieve Mckay Author Of Defining Gravity

From the list on about horse actually written by horse people.

Who am I?

In addition to being a writer, I am an avid horse-person who has been obsessed with these amazing creatures my entire life. I was a pretty feral child so I spent my teen years riding bareback around the countryside, daydreaming about going to the Olympics or thwarting horse thieves or discovering a herd of Unicorns…the usual. I’ve worked at many barns, taken internships, volunteered, and have been lucky enough to own a few horses of my own over the years. The horse books I’m drawn to always have realistic protagonists who are also kind, empathic, and who understand how special and magical these animals are.  

Genevieve's book list on about horse actually written by horse people

Discover why each book is one of Genevieve's favorite books.

Why did Genevieve love this book?

This true-to-life series follows dressage rider, Lizzy, who gives up her job, her boyfriend, and her whole life in order to become a working student with a top trainer. It has a great cast of authentic characters, both humans and horses, and the training parts are spot on. A very enjoyable series.

By Karen McGoldrick,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Dressage Chronicles as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

You know what happens to all those girls who are just crazy about horses?
Once they discover boys, the horses are history.
Or maybe not.
For Lizzy, and others like her, no boy, no man who knows what’s good for him, speaks the unspeakable.
“It’s me or the horse.”
It’s no contest.
And so Lizzy snips the threads that hold her, however tenuously, to a conventional life, and begins her journey into the world of horse sports.
She signs on as a working student for dressage superstar Margot Fanning, heading to south Florida with her six year old mare, for…


The Swamp

By Michael Grunwald,

Book cover of The Swamp: The Everglades, Florida, and the Politics of Paradise

Sharon Levy Author Of The Marsh Builders: The Fight for Clean Water, Wetlands, and Wildlife

From the list on how humanity fouled water and why we need wetlands.

Who am I?

I fell in love with the Arcata Marsh and Wildlife Sanctuary thirty years ago, when I first moved to town. At the time, I was working as a field biologist, and I loved to hang out at the marsh and birdwatch—I’d see everything from pelicans to peregrine falcons. Later I shifted from field biology to science writing, and some of my first articles were about how the Arcata Marsh serves both as a wildlife habitat and a means of treating the city’s sewage. I learned about the grassroots movement that created the marsh, and the global history of wetlands loss. I’ve been hooked on wetlands ever since.

Sharon's book list on how humanity fouled water and why we need wetlands

Discover why each book is one of Sharon's favorite books.

Why did Sharon love this book?

During research for my book, I visited manmade wetlands in south Florida, built to filter farm runoff from the water before it flows into Everglades National Park. These constructed wetlands are thick with alligators, spoonbills, storks, hawks, and other wildlife—but they’re just an echo of the surviving Glades. Now among the most cherished natural areas on Earth, in the settlement era the Everglades was written off as wasted space. Early in the 20th century the northern half of the Everglades was drained and turned into sugar fields. Today polluted runoff from those farms threatens the surviving remnants of the Everglades ecosystem. 

Grunwald’s book shows the human quirks and greed that drove the Everglades’ destruction, and that sometimes get in the way of its restoration.

By Michael Grunwald,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked The Swamp as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

“Brilliant.” —The Washington Post Book World * “Magnificent.” —The Palm Beach Post * “Rich in history yet urgently relevant to current events.” —The New Republic

The Everglades in southern Florida were once reviled as a liquid wasteland, and Americans dreamed of draining it. Now it is revered as a national treasure, and Americans have launched the largest environmental project in history to try to save it.

The Swamp is the stunning story of the destruction and possible resurrection of the Everglades, the saga of man's abuse of nature in southern Florida and his unprecedented efforts to make amends. Michael Grunwald,…


Cross Creek

By Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings,

Book cover of Cross Creek

Janie DeVos Author Of The Art of Breathing

From the list on the flawed but indomitable human spirit.

Who am I?

Being a historical fiction writer, I spend much time researching people and places for my novels with my focus being on the South, particularly Florida, where I’m from, as well as Western North Carolina, where I’ve lived for nearly two decades. Family dynamics and character development have always held a special interest for me; particularly the humanness of being flawed, but also the resilience and strength found within us, too. I enjoy creating characters we can identify with, and become emotionally connected to, so much so that when the final page is turned, readers feel a sense of loss at saying goodbye to characters they’ve come to love.

Janie's book list on the flawed but indomitable human spirit

Discover why each book is one of Janie's favorite books.

Why did Janie love this book?

Writing on a theme that is near and dear to my heart, that being Old Florida, the author of the award-winning, The Yearling, accurately portrays her life living on Cross Creek in rural Central Florida. After buying an old orange grove, sight unseen, this divorced Washington, DC writer brought it back to life, and made a life for herself living among the shy and suspicious people on the creek. Rawlings’ accurate use of local dialect and effective nuances in this beautiful vignette of stories is almost poetic, and magically transports the reader to the creek’s mossy banks. Though the writing and her viewpoints are antiquated in places, Cross Creek remains a classic, and a true work of art to be treasured. 

By Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Cross Creek as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Cross Creek is the warm and delightful memoir about the life of Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings—author of The Yearling—in the Florida backcountry.

Originally published in 1942, Cross Creek has become a classic in modern American literature. For the millions of readers raised on The Yearling, here is the story of Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings's experiences in the remote Florida hamlet of Cross Creek, where she lived for thirteen years. From the daily labors of managing a seventy-two-acre orange grove to bouts with runaway pigs and a succession of unruly farmhands, Rawlings describes her life at the Creek with humor and spirit. Her…


Mules and Men

By Zora Neale Hurston, Miguel Covarrubias (illustrator),

Book cover of Mules and Men

Paul Stoller Author Of Wisdom from the Edge: Writing Ethnography in Turbulent Times

From the list on writing about the wisdom of others.

Who am I?

I was passionate about anthropology in the 1970s when I was in my twenties and am still passionate about anthropology in the 2020s in my seventies. Throughout the years I have expressed my passion for anthropology in university classrooms, in public lectures, and in the 16 books I have published. As my mind has matured, I understand more and more fully just how important it is to write powerfully, cogently, and accessibly about the wisdom of others. In all my books I have attempted to convey to the public this fundamental wisdom, none more so than in my latest book, Wisdom from the Edge: Writing Ethnography in Turbulent Times.   

Paul's book list on writing about the wisdom of others

Discover why each book is one of Paul's favorite books.

Why did Paul love this book?

Hurston’s Mules and Men is a classic work in which the author returns to her hometown, Eatonville, Florida, in the late 1920s to conduct anthropological research. 

In the work Hurston captures the complex texture of social life in a fully incorporated African American community. The result is a rich mix of character descriptions, masterfully crafted dialogues, and a collection of stories that reflect powerfully the deep knowledge and profound wisdom of Eatonville’s cast of characters. 

By Zora Neale Hurston, Miguel Covarrubias (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Mules and Men as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Hurston recounts her experiences collecting Afro-American folklore and offers some seventy folk tales and a series of hoodoo rituals


Wolf Hunt

By Jeff Strand,

Book cover of Wolf Hunt

Heide Goody Author Of Oddjobs

From the list on the horrors of the workplace.

Who are we?

We've been writing together for over ten years now. A theme that we’ve come back to lots of times is the horrible workplace with its bosses from hell. Feedback from readers tells us that the ways in which we’re made miserable at work are universal and it can be fun to examine them in fiction. We doubled down on the theme in the Oddjobs series of books. We both love to read and write horror, and we spend time with lots of horror authors, so this list came together very easily.

Heide's book list on the horrors of the workplace

Discover why each book is one of Heide's favorite books.

Why did Heide love this book?

Even the simplest jobs can turn out to be horrible. George and Lou are the nicest, most amiable underworld thugs you could meet. They just want to get their delivery job done and then go out for some beers and bowling. Except, the thing they don’t know is that their delivery consignment is a very angry werewolf. When it escapes, they are forced into a cat-and-mouse chase across Florida. No paycheck can be worth the horror and torment that Jeff Strand’s bloody comedy puts them through.

By Jeff Strand,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Wolf Hunt as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Two thugs. One innocent woman. And one VICIOUS frickin' werewolf.

Meet George and Lou, thugs for hire. The kind of intimidating-yet-friendly guys who will break your thumbs, but be polite about it. Their latest assignment is to drive across Florida to deliver some precious cargo to a crime lord. The cargo: a man in a cage. Though Ivan seems perfectly human, they’re warned that he is, in fact, a bloodthirsty werewolf.

George and Lou don’t believe in the supernatural, but even if they did, it’s daytime and tonight isn’t the full moon. Their instructions are straightforward: Do not open the…


Book cover of Devil in the Baptist Church: Bob Gray's Unholy Trinity

Oladapo Richard Osuntokun Author Of The Ordained Demon: The Story of a Young Priest

From the list on keeping you away from freaking out in Hell.

Who am I?

I am interested in identifying and narrowing the fringes between Religion and Psychology and Psychiatry and bringing them together. I am especially interested in pastoral counseling through meditation and prayer. As a Psychiatrist, counselor, teacher of Psychology, Psychiatry, and Religion, and Pastor of a church. My passion is refining and simplifying the processes involved in tackling day-to-day obstacles posed by depression, PTSD, suicide, drug addiction, and other life-threatening mental health issues. I love storytelling. Most of my books will start with a story that will help everyone draw an independent personal conclusion on how to deal with a universal problem.

Oladapo's book list on keeping you away from freaking out in Hell

Discover why each book is one of Oladapo's favorite books.

Why did Oladapo love this book?

This book comes out with a story about the consequences of Temptation in a close and personal way. Both books must bring the fear of the Lord into the denominator, so anyone at the top, any pastor or Priest, must plant his feet on a solid foundation: the rock of Jesus Christ.

The scandal of Bob Gray, the Pastor of the Trinity Baptist Church and the founder of the Trinity Baptist academy in Jacksonville, Florida, depicts how Satan is always hovering around to make God's anointed people fall like a bag of cement. These stories indicate why every Pastor or religious leader must be engaged, close to, or have access to pastoral and regular therapeutic counseling.  

There must be as many therapists close to a man like this as many parishioners. As the achievement of a man of God intensifies, so must be the need for him to talk about…

By Tim Gilmore,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Devil in the Baptist Church as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Bob Gray built Trinity Baptist Church in Jacksonville, Florida from a minuscule congregation to what once was the largest Baptist church in Florida. As he became a national leader of Baptist fundamentalism, he also sexually abused children for more than 50 years. This book tells the story of the rise of Southern fundamentalism and the lengths to which one church went to cover up for its pastor's crimes.


Mile Marker Zero

By William McKeen,

Book cover of Mile Marker Zero: The Moveable Feast of Key West

Bruce Hunt Author Of Visiting Small-Town Florida

From the list on for Florida-philes.

Who am I?

Bruce Hunt is a native Floridian writer and photographer. He has authored eleven Florida travel and history books, and over the last three decades has written and photographed hundreds of articles for magazines and newspapers. For five years he was a regular feature writer and photographer for DuPont Registry Tampa Bay Magazine. His work has also appeared in The St. Petersburg Times (Tampa Bay Times), Tampa Tribune, The Visit Tampa Bay Official Visitors Guide, Backpacker Magazine, Rock & Ice Magazine, Skydiving Magazine, Florida Trend Magazine, Celebrity Car Magazine, Coastal Living Magazine, and Southern Living Magazine, among others.

Bruce's book list on for Florida-philes

Discover why each book is one of Bruce's favorite books.

Why did Bruce love this book?

William McKeen’s account of the evolution of 1960s–1970s Key West reads like a novel. Based largely on his interviews with Tom Corcoran (who was there then and knew everybody), McKeen tells the wild tales of some of Key West’s most eccentric and now famous characters from that era, like Tennessee Williams, Thomas McGuane, Margot Kidder, Jim Harrison, Hunter Thompson, and Jimmy Buffett.

By William McKeen,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Mile Marker Zero as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

For Hemingway and Fitzgerald, there was Paris in the twenties. For others, later, there was Greenwich Village, Big Sur, and Woodstock. But for an even later generation-one defined by the likes of Jimmy Buffett, Tom McGuane, and Hunter S. Thompson-there was another moveable feast: KeyWest, Florida.

The small town on the two-by-four-mile island has long been an artistic haven, a wild refuge for people of all persuasions, and the inspirational home for a league of great American writers. Some of the artists went there to be literary he-men. Some went to re-create themselves. Others just went to disappear-and succeeded. No…


A Beautiful Truth

By Colin McAdam,

Book cover of A Beautiful Truth

Robert Repino Author Of Morte

From the list on animals becoming sentient.

Who am I?

In addition to writing novels, I’m a humanities editor for Oxford University Press. So, I’m interested in the political and theological implications of non-human intelligence. I wonder how people would react to such a revelation. Some would be fascinated by this radical new perspective. Others would be horrified at what they perceive as a transgression against nature. I’m also drawn to this topic because I still vividly recall the entertainment of my youth, which regularly featured anthropomorphic animals. Sometimes they’re just cool or funny. But on occasion—like with The Secret of NIMH—they raise profound questions of identity and rebellion, even for an audience that is too young to understand.

Robert's book list on animals becoming sentient

Discover why each book is one of Robert's favorite books.

Why did Robert love this book?

A childless couple adopts a chimpanzee named Looee, and you already know from reading that sentence that it will lead to trouble and heartbreak. After a few pages, I didn’t care. In McAdam’s skilled hands, the inevitable sadness doesn’t matter, because the delicately handled point of view perfectly captures a doomed creature trapped between two opposing identities. In contrast, we also meet Podo, an alpha chimp at a research facility seeking to test the intelligence of primates. Podo is fully ape, but he is turning into something more. Their paths soon join, taking them deeper into a gray area between human and animal that I had never seen rendered on the page so vividly before. 

By Colin McAdam,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Beautiful Truth as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Walt and Judy's happiness has been blighted by their childlessness; although their marriage seems blissful, Judy feels increasingly empty and Walt longs to make her happy again. So one day he brings home Looee - a baby chimpanzee. Looee, exuberant and demanding, immediately fills the gap in Walt and Judy's life, and they come to love him as their own son. Like any child, Looee is affectionate and quick to learn, generous and engaging. But he is also a deeply unpredictable animal, and one night their unique family life is changed forever.
At the Girdish Institute, chimpanzees have been studied…


Broken Trust

By Brooke Burton,

Book cover of Broken Trust

Louise Murchie Author Of Dìonadair

From the list on spicy, Scottish romance, multi-partner suspense.

Who am I?

I love second-chance romances and I am not in my twenties anymore; so I wrote what I wanted to read. Now, I've found other authors who write 35+, characters who have lived, been hurt, and moved on in life. I do read New Adult or younger than 35 characters and often, really smutty, erotic books as I need to get out of my head sometimes. I love Nora Roberts, Claudia Burgoa, Catharina Maura, Jolie Vines and I'll one-click quite a few indies.

Louise's book list on spicy, Scottish romance, multi-partner suspense

Discover why each book is one of Louise's favorite books.

Why did Louise love this book?

It starts with Broken Trust, but Brooke writes such realistic characters and situations, you forget it's fiction. She writes Sweet with Heat, a genre that's not too smutty but certainly isn't afraid to mention the sex. It's been great working with her and reading her work and I wonder just what situation she's dreamt up for the brothers this time!

By Brooke Burton,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Broken Trust as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Jax learned early on that it's a bad idea to mix business with pleasure. But he has to question his resolve when small-town spitfire Galen crashes into his world.

A killer in the boardroom? Check!

Beauty as well as brains? Check!

Loves hole-in-the-wall restaurants, local markets, and greasy cheeseburgers? Where has she been all his life?

Galen's entire life has been controlled by her overbearing father, who's tried to mold her into a carbon copy of himself. When she arrives in the sunny haven of Daytona Beach, Florida, the only thing on her mind is sealing the deal on an…


The Whole Truth

By Nancy Pickard,

Book cover of The Whole Truth

Cathy Pickens Author Of Triangle True Crime Stories

From the list on for people who think they don’t like true crime.

Who am I?

When I started writing mysteries, beginning with St. Martin’s Malice Award-winning Southern Fried, I wanted to get the medical, investigative, and courtroom details right. What better resource than good first-hand accounts from professionals who do those things every day? I love traditional, play-fair mysteries and the puzzles they present. But I also love writers who get the technical details right while also writing engaging novels I can get lost in. Nothing better than curling up with a good mystery.

Cathy's book list on for people who think they don’t like true crime

Discover why each book is one of Cathy's favorite books.

Why did Cathy love this book?

Nancy Pickard is one of my favorite authors, starting with her Jenny Cain series. The Whole Truth, featuring true-crime writer Marie Lightfoot, was a shift for her. The novel simultaneously follows Marie as she researches the case of a dangerous serial killer and as she writes about it, which gives an interesting insight into the difficulties of living in a world where crime is real.

By Nancy Pickard,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Whole Truth as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"Nancy Pickard pushes at the presumed limits of [crime fiction]" said the Los Angeles Times Book Review, praising the award-winning creator of the Jenny Cain mysteries. Now, Pickard blurs the line between fiction and reality in a novel of gripping intensity, and premieres a superb new heroine: true-crime author Marie Lightfoot. For her next surefire bestseller, Marie is covering the trial of a Florida killer -- a case that penetrates her own life, layer by disturbing layer.

Whether real like Ted Bundy, or imagined like Hannibal Lecter, few killers of our time are in the same league as Raymond Raintree.…