"Path-breaking work. . . . Herb Hiller's knowledge of Florida is exhaustive and unique. Highway A1A is an indispensable read for anyone having a commercial, professional, or even purely curious interest in the future of this skyrocketing state."--Arthur Frommer, founder of the Arthur Frommer travel guide series
"Will Floridians wake one day to find their Eden irrevocably despoiled? The drama is being played out right now, and the Day of Judgment is not far off. Herb Hiller reports with a keen eye, a sympathetic ear, encyclopedic knowledge, and obvious affection for his home state, its people, and its great but imperiled potential."--Tom Brosnahan, author of eight Lonely Planet books and travelwebsiteplanner.com
Highway A1A: Florida at the Edge is more than an insightful guide to the cities and towns along Florida's Atlantic coast. It is also the dramatic story of how tourism begat development, how development begat sprawl, and how this coastal corridor, almost out of the blue, created Florida's original year-round residential downtowns with the power to transform how Floridians live and how the world vacations in the Sunshine State. Highway A1A is anecdotal, authoritative, humorous, and wide-ranging. Passionately Floridian travel writer and tourism analyst Herbert Hiller offers a fuller and more balanced story about Florida's Atlantic coast than any other guidebook.
Exploring towns from Callahan to Key West, Hiller covers Florida's 13 Atlantic counties, providing maps, historical and present-day photographs, and recommendations for places to visit, lodge, eat, and shop that are truly local in character. Whether you're a tourist or a roving Floridian looking for some diversion not far from home, Highway A1A will put you in touch with what makes the Atlantic coast special--its dynamic sites and sights.
Herbert Hiller has written for Atlantic Monthly, National Geographic Traveler, and Land and People. He lives in Putnam County, Florida, and is at work on a new book about Florida downtowns, small towns, and the trails that connect them.
No Sample Chapter AvailableAwards
North American Travel Journalists Association Award - 2007
"Hiller's new book. . . an opinionated look at the history of Florida's populous east coast."
--St. Petersburg Times
"Readers will come away feeling that they have just been handed an insider's view of where to go, what to see, and what it's all about down the southern Atlantic coast."
"a passionate and up-to-date biography of the highway and its adjacent communities."
"How did we get to this situation? Hiller's book is revealing."
--News-Leader (Fernandina Beach)
"There is nothing dry or hackneyed in this telling of the story of Florida's 13 Atlantic-coast counties. Some parts read like a juicy gossip column, but this stuff is true."
"Hiller is a communicator. He speaks with an easy self-assurance, so that listeners realize he knows what he is talking about. His writing is clear, with enough pique to keep it edgy and enough humanity to make it comfortable."
"Hiller has been at this a long time. His views on Florida are so complete because he has spent the past five decades traveling and writing about it."
"There is a difference between Hiller and those who only complain about the state's inadequacies and problems. Hiller works to influence change."
--Deland-Deltona Beacon (FL)
"Herbert Hiller has written a book about Florida that, like many really good reads, defies classification. "Highway A1A: Florida at the Edge" is history as a cautionary tale, a travel book with an attitude about tourism."
"Those who use this book as travel guide will find useful information about attractions and recreations. Those who want to know why Florida is like it is and where it might be headed will also not be disappointed."
"A must for any thinking traveler."
County by county, Hiller explores the political dynamics and interplay between politicians and developers that made Florida what it is today…a great primer for all who are concerned about Florida's sprawling growth and erosion of quality of life.
--Logger Head - Newsletter of the Turtle Coast Sierra Club
…a splendid book: a work of civic commitment to fellow Floridians and a creditable history as a useful travel guide--these elements persuasively synchronized and accessible to a wide audience.
--Florida Historical Quarterly