Second volume from Norwood a winner
SUN PHOTO/LAURIE KROSNEY
Author Carolyne Norwood poses with her editorial assistant, Lulu.
Carolyne Norwood has done it again. Her second book, “Tales of Three Cities: From Bean Point to Bridge Street” is full of amusing and interesting tales about Anna Maria Island.
Norwood’s first book, “The Early Days” covers the time period of 1893 until 1940. That first book is a wonderful chronology of the settlement and establishment of a community on the Island.
This second book is just as grand.
The book is filled with shots to illustrate the tales Norwood tells. She’s divided up her chapters into subjects.
“I just couldn’t make it work chronologically, so I grouped subjects together and wrote about the ones I thought were most interesting,” she said.
From Chapters One through 10, the reader will encounter tales from the past, wildlife, the evolution of the three cities that comprise the Island, the education life here, wildlife, civic pride, places of interest, businesses and finally, the inevitable changes that are coming to the Island.
This reviewer found herself unexpectedly laughing out loud at the antics of the professional baseball players who lived and played on the Island – guys that Norwood refers to as “the boys of winter.”
Then there was the time the police came to a party looking for George Norwood, because the dog Chester had escaped by digging a huge hole under the fence to accost a femme fatale of a Doberman that was in heat.
“Your dog is oversexed,” the owner yelled as Chester was led away in disgrace.
Readers will enjoy the passage where baited hooks were left out for sharks on the Anna Maria City Pier while pool games were played on the swaying structure. Tin cans were rigged to alert the anglers when they had a strike.
“One night we ran out and saw the bench and a number of planks from the pier heading up the bay,” Norwood quotes a John Adams story. “We never saw the shark, but we knew it was a good one.”
There are stories of herds of raccoons coming to feed, baby sea turtles raised in a nursery, ferrets, snakes, fiddler crabs, mosquitoes and other bugs and birds.
Norwood’s anecdotes and words have a way of making the reader feel a part of each scene. Don’t be surprised if you have to scratch a spot when you read about the clouds of mosquitoes that plagued the Island then. But the reader will soon forget the itch and bust out in guffaws a few lines later.
Norwood culled these stories from old newspapers, old records and from personal experience. She’s lived on the Island since 1956 and was acquainted with all the players from then on.
No question about it, Norwood has created another Island masterpiece and anyone who loves the Island, which is everyone who lives here, has ever lived here or has ever visited here will absolutely love.
It’s a rollicking good read and a treasure chest of tales that have made Anna Maria Island the place it is today.