Key West: History of an Island of Dreams
by Maureen Ogle
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I picked up this book because of the title. For the 2017 What's in a Name Challenge I needed a book with a compass direction in the title and "West" fit the bill.
This history of Key West, Florida turned out to be fascinating, though a bit repetitive. It covers the island from the days of pirates and salvaging through the civil war (when the island remained loyal to the Union despite Florida's secession), the New Deal, and wraps up with the real estate boom of the 1980s. The boom and bust cycles of the military installations on the island and the various people (mostly writers) complaining about all the tourists several times gave me the feeling that I had read a particular bit before. Overall this was a very readable tale of a place I knew almost nothing about.
Maureen Ogle also wrote Ambitious Brew: The Story of American Beer (2007) which is definitely going on my TBR list.