Tampa Bay's National Historic Landmark District

Adventures galore here in Ybor!

Serious novelists and reporters alike can spend their lives in search of a perfect opening sentence. Here’s a doozy from crime writer Dennis Lehane from his bestseller Live by Night:

“Some years later, on a tugboat in the Gulf of Mexico, Joe Coughlin’s feet were placed in a tub of cement.”

Just 21 words – but I defy anyone not to read on after that taut opener, and my flight to Florida passed quickly in the company of Lehane’s lean prose. I had plucked Lehane’s Prohibition-era tour de force from the shelf mainly because it was set in Ybor City, the historic enclave of Tampa, my final destination.

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