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The Flamingo Rising
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The Flamingo Rising

3.76 of 5 stars 3.76  ·  rating details  ·  368 ratings  ·  42 reviews
In this touching, hilarious novel of the heart and mind, of dreams and memory, of desire and first love, Abe Lee comes of age in the 1960s, living with his unforgettable family at the Flamingo Drive-In Theatre on a scrubby patch of coast between Jacksonville and St. Augustine, Florida. There, some of America's last sweet moments of innocence are unfolding.

For Abe's father,
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Published November 17th 2010 by Ballantine Books (first published 1997)
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Shawn Keenan
This book really pulled me in and kept me engaged until the end. The two things that stood out to me in this book were the characters and timeline and its use as a heavy-handed foreshadowing device. Having gotten to the end of the book and the pivotal scene that most of the foreshadowing was leading up to, I felt the unusual device was warranted and lent to the emotional impact of the scene in a needful way. All of the characters were fleshed out with deep backgrounds and personal motivations th ...more
Good Book Fairy
my book club decided to read this book after it was on a list of books that was required reading at our kid's high school and a group of extremists wanted to have it banned from the selection choices.

as we are all consummate readers, we were totally against the crazy folk who want ANY books banned but we decided to pick one of them and read it to see why.

well, we're still trying to figure that one out. yes, there is a virginity lost. is it consensual, yes. was it told graphically, no!

i found thi
Cathy Klein
I first read this book about 15 years ago and remember loving the story and the characters. It's one of those few books that can genuinely make me feel emotional, both happy & sad. Abraham's story about his father's legacy in the Flamingo Drive-in and his own coming of age is just enough "crazy" & touching. There's so much to think about between the relationship of Abraham & Grace and Abraham & Alice that I don't have the exact words to describe them, but I love them both.
Joe Bolin
The ultimate compliment: I'm going to miss my friends at "The Flamingo." This novel was a thoroughly engrossing read, full of quirky, sympathetic characters. The ending left me with questions, but satisfied.
Published in 1997, this book was given to me by a friend. Reminiscent in more than location, of the more recent book by Laura Lee Smith, Heart of Palm, The Flamingo Rising is set on the Atlantic Coast near St. Augustine . The action in this book centers on the story of a family that owns and runs a drive in movie theater located on the beach. Eccentric parents, two adopted children and an extended family of usual workers and helpers live in and manage the theater. Across the road and in the shad ...more
Larry Baker's The Flamingo Rising came off as sort of John Irving-lite: quirky characters, meandering stories, but none of the impact that Irving novels have. Still, it was a cute, sweet story and I enjoyed slipping into the Lees lives for a bit.
Set in the 1960s along the Florida coast, The Flamingo Rising is a coming of age story starring Abe Lee, who has fallen in love with his father's mortal enemy's daughter, Grace. Told primarily in flashbacks, we meet the Lee family, headed by genuine luna
Christina (Ensconced in Lit)
I was recommended this book by a good friend.

I will say this first. I have never read a book like The Flamingo Rising by Larry Baker and I've read a lot. This book is hard to describe. The best I can do is that the protagonist and narrator is Abraham, the adopted Korean son, to a drive-in theater Florida native. We find that later in life, Abraham is a lover a photography. To me, the book is written in a series of photographs-- snap shots in time that are focused around his early teen years, his
A pretty decent coming of age story, which is made unique by the way that the author weaves together different time lines inside of the plot. The narrator's voice is distinctive, and the content of the story is memorable. The characters are well rendered, and very, very likable. The main action of the story takes place in the tumultuous era of the late sixties, amid the vietnam war, civil rights, and the changing American landscape.

However, all in all, the book is a pleasant diversion without r
I loved this book, and it is definitely a contender for my top ten of 2008 list. Hubert Lee builds the world's biggest drive-in theater, the Flamingo, next to Turner West's funeral home, sparking an intense feud. Hubert Lee adopted two children from Korea, Louise and Abe, our narrator.

The book was billed as a Romeo and Juliet story between Abe and Turner West's daughter, Grace, but it's more of a coming-of-age in the 1960s story. I was interested in all of the quirky and unique characters, and
Clivemichael Justice
Engaging story telling, lively characters, an enjoyable read
Stephanie Holcomb
This was a good book.

Seriously. I'm a fan of John Irving, Pat Conroy and the like, and the writing of Larry Baker is similar. An intriguing story, a coming of age story of a Korean adopted boy and his sister growing up in Florida in a drive-in movie theatre and the people who work there, as well as the love of his life--the daughter of the man who owns the funeral home next door, Abraham's father's nemesis. Intriguing, fascinating, sexy without being pornographic and often just lovely, this is a
There was a certain story line in the book that I didn't like. Overall though I thought it was a good book. It grabbed my attention and was able to hold it. I kept wanting to keep reading to find out what was going to happen.
Carol N
I always associated flamingos with air-stream trailers nestled in the quiet of a Florida trailer park and not in the peaceful setting of the bygone days of drive-ins. A clever spin on Romeo and Juliet, this was an insane but funny and innocent romp through the '60's. The character made you both laugh or grief for them. My favorites . . . Alice and Pete, of course. Imagine living in a caboose and always having your living space available to take you from place to place.
A fun, quick read. It was a little irritating at first because the foreshadowing is just so heavy handed and disjointed from the action it is embedded within. Either I got used to this or the author stopped beating us over the head with loaded teasers of the significant events quite so much, because I was able to get past it and enjoy the book. Even despite these teasers, you don't see the climatic plot twist coming until the events leading to it have been set in motion.
One of my top books ever! Bizarre, tragic and heartwarming and funny. A great story about families, friends and coming of age. Father Hubert Lee and wife Edna Scott adopt Korean babies born on the same day - Louise and Abraham Isaac. Hubert owns the largest outdoor Dive-In Theater and lives in the tower. He feuds with his neighbor Turner West, owner of a funeral home. Other great characters wowrk at the Drive-in.

Everyone I've loaned the book to has loved it also.
Stacy Parrish
As an English teacher, I have read many "good" books, but this is my favorite book of all time. I read it each and every summer. It is like an old friend.

This book is unlike any coming of age novel I have ever read. Living in the world's largest drive-in movie theatre, the Lee family teaches the reader what it means to love and lose. The narrator is one of the most genuine voices I have read. I love it...totally love it.
Michael Brockley
A drive-in mogul bullies an undertaker; the cast entertains.
Simon Deimel
This is a great novel about growing up and experiences that life teaches you. I am usually a fan of mystery and horror stories, but I enjoyed it right from the beginning. I love the description of the main characters, they appear colorful and their motives are comprehensible. This is something that every author wants to achieve: a piece of literature.
Romeo and Juliet story set at a 60's drive-in. Our Romeo's parents own the Flamingo drive-in and Juliet lives next door in the funeral home run by her father. Funny and heart-breaking tale that concludes with enough drama to make Will Shakespeare proud. Good story and a fast read. Perfect vacation book.
Notcathy J
"Amazingly bad book. Insipid, unintelligent." Then Cathy put a bracket around the hype stuff, eg: national media appearances, national author tour, etc. and said, " Why the American literary world is going straight to hell". I suppose because they're spending tons of money to hype such a crappy book.
Oh, man, I loved this book! It brought back memories of my own experiences as a teen and the characters are easy to relate to. I laughed my ass off in many parts of this book, and to me, that's a reason to read a book right there!
I found this book on the clearance rack at Half Price books a few years ago, and I loved it. It's about a family who owns a drive-in movie theater, with the son narrating. It has John Irving-ish feel to it, in an interesting way.
interesting book about north Florida history in the A1A beaches area south of Jacksonville and north of St. Augustine. Fun to read about local places that we know existed and wonder about some that we have not experienced.
Tonia Graves
Just a really great story by yet another Floridian. Won't really make you "think", but you will get lost in the tale of this family and their lighthouse drive-in movie theatre on Florida's first coast.
Ken Harwood
Quite a fun tale, loaded with sensuality, of a family coming of age at the Florida drive-in theater they own. It features some real experiences of the author while managing Tulsa's Admiral Twin drive-in.
Steven Gilbert
Loved this story when I read it several years ago and was reminded of it once again a few days ago when my wife and I took both of the girls to their first drive-in theatre. Fabulous!
This is the author's first novel and accordingly has some flaws, but there are so many memorable characters and events that the flaws can be forgiven. I loved this book.
The cast of characters is reminiscent of a John Irving novel, but some parts seemed contrived just to make everything come together in the end. Overall a very enjoyable read.
Sep 06, 2007 Shonas rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: sure
great quick read.
historical fiction/entertainment regarding northeast florida in the 1950s or so.
i liked it, as I live in Saint Augustine.
Lauren Silverman
This is a great coming of age book. It's focused around a family's drive-in movie theatre in Florida in 1960s and one very pivotal summer.
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A rapidly becoming obscure mid-list writer, whose first novel, FLAMINGO RISING, was a Hallmark movie and whose second, ATHENS/AMERICA, is now invisible and unattainable.
My new book, A GOOD MAN, is about drunk radio talk show hosts, food, politics, and the possible Second Coming. It also involves a threesome with Nancy Grace, Ann Coulter, and a fictional right-wing talk show host.
Book is dedicated
More about Larry Baker...
A Good Man Athens, America Love and Other Delusions The Education of Nancy Adams It's a God Thing!: Inspiring Stories of Life-Changing Friendships

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