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4th of July, Asbury Park: A History of the Promised Land

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3.74  ·  Rating details ·  92 Ratings  ·  12 Reviews
"Wonderfully evocative…a grand, sad story of racism and real estate, political hardball and seaside pleasure-seeking."--A.O. Scott, New York Times Book Review

When Bruce Springsteen called his first album Greetings from Asbury Park, he introduced a generation of fans to a fallen seaside resort town that came to represent working-class American life. Starting with the town
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Paperback, 288 pages
Published June 27th 2006 by Bloomsbury USA (first published July 4th 2005)
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Christine
Mar 14, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Asbury Park was my main haunt while I lived in New Jersey. The first time I drove through Asbury Park, it was just surreal. The rusted, unfinished skeleton of a highrise condo loomed out of an eerie fog rolling in off the ocean. The place was a mess, the decaying remains of a Victorian-era amusement park and resort town.

I loved it. It was full of broken dreams and bad deals. It reminded me of Cleveland.
Rich Flammer
Nov 11, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If you have an interest in history, music, the New Jersey Shore (sans Snooky and The Situation), capitalism, segregation, Puritanism, racial issues, religion, Stephen Crane, literature, Asbury Park, urban renewal, municipal government, political corruption, Bruce Springsteen, or the tragedy and vacuousness of American values and hope, I'd highly recommend this book.
Jen
May 11, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mark
May 24, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excellent book by historian Daniel Wolff, which uses the 4th of July date to frame several points in the civic and musical history of this famous city by the shore. Two minor shortcomings: parts of the book are a little dense with detail, and the history ends at 2005 (the book was written in 2009). I would like to see an updated paperback version that takes in Asbury Park's current revival.
Jeff
Jul 06, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is an interesting read about the history of Asbury Park, how it came to be, and it's slow and steady collapse. There are some definite oddities to the town yet it also sounds like many other boomtowns across the USA.
E
Oct 03, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history, non-fiction
Eloquent and depressing, about a city that has captured my imagination. Slightly more dry than I would prefer, but overall fascinating and thoroughly researched.
MaryEllen Clark
Oct 17, 2007 rated it really liked it
I loved this book! great weaving of local Jersey shore history, music history and social history.
Judy
Jan 17, 2016 rated it it was ok
Didn't really like it.
Mkmsales
Apr 26, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fascinating info on a place I visited often. Adds a different perspective on events I saw from way outside. Very insightful.
Christopher
Growing up in an area in economic, physical, and social decline, "you gotta get out while you're young."
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298659
Grammy-nominated author Daniel Wolff's latest book is "Grown-up Anger: Bob Dylan, Woody Guthrie, and the Calumet Massacre of 1913." His previous books include "The Names of Birds," "The Fight for Home: How (Parts of) New Orleans Came Back," "How Lincoln Learned to Read,""4th of July/Asbury Park" and "You Send Me: The Life and Times of Sam Cooke.""
More about Daniel Wolff...

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