Thank you to Arcadia Publishing for providing review copies of the two following books. Look reviews in the future.
Kenning, Thomas. Abandoned Coastal Defenses of Alabama. Charleston: Arcadia Publishing, 2021. 96 pages, color photos. ISBN 9781634992831, $23.99.
Abandoned Coastal Defenses of Alabama is a down-and-dirty guided tour through Fort Morgan and Fort Gaines, the retired guardians of Alabama’s Gulf Coast. For nearly two hundred years, these hauntingly beautiful Third System forts have stood stubbornly between the Yellowhammer State and a sometimes hostile world beyond.
Handwerk, Joel. Abandoned Virginia. Charleston: Arcadia Publishing, 2021. 96 pages, notes, color photos. ISBN 9781634992954, 23.99.
Have you ever driven past a dilapidated old building, with broken windows and covered in ivy, and wondered what happened there? How long has that building been vacant and left to be consumed by nature? This book takes you on a photo tour of such buildings in Virginia, all forgotten and falling apart. There is an Art Deco city skyscraper, which formerly held a bank, complete with a bank vault. Another property contains a sprawling complex of a former Catholic high school. Additional locations include houses, schools, commercial warehouses, and even a former outdoor Renaissance Faire.
Sometimes there is available information about how these buildings became abandoned. In other cases, the story is a complete mystery. Regardless of the details, there is something intriguing about seeing a structure that has slowly decayed, a once pristine place being transformed into broken glass and crumbling ceiling tiles. The people are long gone, but you can still see what remains of something they have left behind, just waiting to be discovered with a camera.
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