Mile Marker Zero: The Moveable Feast of Key West

Mile Marker Zero: The Moveable Feast of Key West

by William McKeen


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“A tall but telescopic-sight-true tale of Hunter Thompson, Jimmy Buffett, Tom McGuane, and a large cavorting cast running around with sand in their shoes at ‘ground zero for lust and greed and most of the other deadly sins’: Key West.”—Tom Wolfe
“An engrossing tell-all in which Key West’s most notable residents struggle to find sanity, sobriety and a place to call home.”—Kirkus Reviews
“A necessary read for fans of Florida fiction or any of the figures included here, as well as for those traveling to Key West.”—Library Journal
“McKeen’s portrait of Key West as a onetime bohemian utopia and hotspot is atmospheric, and . . . his anecdotes are absorbing.”—Publishers Weekly
“A romp . . . a rollicking chronicle of the musicians, artists, writers and filmmakers who created a vibrant if nihilistic scene in the 1970s. Deft storytelling . . . a good story about good times (and bad).”—Wall Street Journal
“Only enhances the appeal of the Conch Republic . . . a tale of the island’s famous personalities that flows as easily as an ocean breeze.”—Orlando Sentinel
“Make McKeen’s tale your next trip to the island.”—South Florida Sun-Sentinel
“A wonderful zinger of a book. Never before have the literary traditions of the Conch Republic been mined for such gold nugget anecdotes.”—Douglas Brinkley
Mile Marker Zero tells the story of how a league of great American writers and artists found their identities in Key West and maintained their friendships over the decades, despite oceans of booze and boatloads of pot, through serial marriages and sexual escapades, in that dangerous paradise. Here are true tales of a generation that invented, reinvented, and found itself at the unending cocktail party at the end—and the beginning—of America’s highway.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780813062310
Publisher: University Press of Florida
Publication date: 09/06/2016
Pages: 240
Sales rank: 590,191
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.20(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

William McKeen is the author or editor of many books, including Homegrown in Florida, Outlaw Journalist: The Life and Times of Hunter S. Thompson, Highway 61: A Father-and-Son Journey through the Middle of America, and Rock and Roll Is Here to Stay: An Anthology. He is chair of the Department of Journalism at Boston University.

Table of Contents

1 The Taco Man 1

2 Island of Bones 13

3 The Template 25

4 A Different Society 40

5 McGuane 51

6 The Boys 68

7 Nowhere to Hide 81

8 The Failure 93

9 This Republic of Ours 105

10 Square Grouper 126

11 A Year of Living Dangerously 136

12 Margaritaville 156

13 The King of Gonzo 171

14 Bum Farto and Ping-Ping 200

15 Redemption 215

16 Evacuation 230

Epilogue Don't Stop the Carnival 243

Author's Note 265

Acknowledgments 269

Notes 271

Bibliography 287

Index 293

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