M-M-Mel Tillis says

“I have known the Futch family just about all my life . . . and, if you like it wild and wooley, Alvin’s narratives of growing up in and around Plant City, and all over the state of Florida for that matter, are about the wildest and wooliest as it gets. A Great read.”

Mel Tillis

Al Berry Says–

“For the past year I have enjoyed reading excerpts from Alvin Futch’s book “Wild & Wooley and Full of Fleas” in the Hillsborough County monthly publication of In the Field magazine. Recently, Alvin sent me a copy of the final manuscript. The book is a side-splitting, humorous reading adventure of life growing up on the family ranch in east Hillsborough County. Expect a delightful reading experience as each chapter of the book is funnier than the last one.

Al Berry-Editor-in-Cheif, In the Field

Jim Paul says–

“What a trip! Alvin Futch and his scribe, cousin Chuck, lead us into a quaint, exciting, poignant, and sometimes unbelievable history of life on a ranch in West Central Florida during the second third of the 20th century. Rarely does one have the opportunity to see, feel, and smell days now long gone. Wild & Wooley is a textbook on the culture, economics, and challenges of the depression days and days that followed as seen through the eyes of a boy in a resilient family. Alvin is now a senir citizen and he has given us a gift to savor. The graphic images of lived experiences in his family stick in the mind. You’ll laugh, cry, shudder, admire, and simply feel the tugs of struggles and overcoming against all adds. It is a joy to read and education for those interested in rural Florida when it was getting it’s economic footing and coming of age. Florida has had growing pains and remarkable gains. Alvin lived all of it and shares it in  this remarkable and very readable narrative of life in his family and community.”

Jim Paul, PhD, Retired Professor,

University of South Florida, Tampa

Cousin Charles says–

“This began as a simple project to set down Alvin’s personal history for his family. The further we went the bigger it got, developing into a most readable and interesting book.

As we began the process of verbalizing the unique pictures that make up Alvin’s life, what I had always thought was confirmed, he is truly a great storyteller. We are third cousins but didn’t know each other when we were growing up. We got acquainted and became close friends after my return to Florida when I moved my family to Plant City in 1956.

I was born and raised in Sarasota County, almost living a parallel life to Alvin. My early years were spent on a large ranch/farm operation managed by my dad, Charles E. (Tobe) Futch, Sr. We faced many of the common challenges of the day so it was easy to relate as his stories unfolded.

It has been an absolute joy to participate in this trip which, incidentally, I hope hasn’t come to an end. There are many, many more great stories he needs to tell, so stand by.”

Charles E. (Chuck) Futch

11 Responses to Reviews

  1. Marsha and Bob McOsker says:

    We both read “Wild and Wooley” and loved it. Janet, Alvin’s daughter, is my friend and I told her not once but many times, if I hadn’t known, I would have thought I was reading about the Wild West, not Cracker Florida. Highly recommended reading to anyone wanting to know about ranching and living in the “wilds” of Florida. Alvin, we anxiously await Volume #2.

  2. Nancy S. says:

    I want to thank you for writing a darn amusing piece of “literature” through your own life’s story. Some of it was admittedly serious and that is life for sure. It sure was Wild and Wooley!

    I am from New York State (I know.. a darn Yankee). I was the owner and operator of a dairy farm here for 20 years and I spent about 35 years of my life training and riding horses (nothing like the things in your book, tho I can shoe a horse). I hunted deer here (yesterday was opening of the season up here.. southern zone in NY) and when I was 17 I took an 8 point white tail at 250 yards with open sites with a Remington 700 .243. Standing shot. I also like to fish and hike.

    Currently, along with working, I am tied up training two German Shepherd dogs who live the lives of Riley along with my 6 cats. Sometimes it is wild and wooley right here in the house with all of them living together. Mostly it is a peaceful coexistance but when the puppy gets playing with the one cat they would like to destroy the place so I need to step in and settle things down.

    I do admire your bravery taking wives to the Cow House. That took more courage than you and RE going after that hog that had been shot but not hurt (seems to me you had the techniqe down well and you and RE could have saved a lot of lead harvesting hogs in that manner from then on out).

    I am looking forward to the sequel to this book!! I am sorry right now it is finished.

  3. Being a Florida cracker myself and having grown up in the same time period and
    having similar experiences, I enjoyed this book very much. It really tells it like it was. I have ordered several copies to give to friends and they have all enjoyed it too !
    I would highly recommend this book. Thanks, Alvin.
    Sincerely, Elmer Kirkland

  4. Donald Allen Jr. says:

    December 8, 2010

    Mr.’s Alvin and Charles Futch,

    Just a note to you both to express my pleasure of meeting you last Saturday. I enjoyed the time spent with you, Charlie Brown and Jim Strickland.

    For me, “Wild and Wooley” is the best read ever. What I admire is all the hard work, humor, grit, self-sufficiency and self-reliance you all showed. True Americans. Thank you for all the time and effort you all put into relating your stories for so many of us to enjoy and learn.

    Best regards,

    Don Allen
    Parrish Fl.

  5. Frenda Franklin Ward says:

    Alvin, I saw a photograph of a memorial in Plant City, honoring the Cow Cavalry from the Civil War. My gggrandfather was in this unit during that time and is buried in Plant City. My father was born in PC, as I was also. Can you tell me where this memorial is located in Plant City, as I would like to visit it.

    Thanks so much, Frenda Franklin Ward

  6. Pamela says:

    As a fifth generation Florida native who grew up hearing and living some of these experiences I am eager to purchase my copy of Wild and Wooley. It will be a great Christmas gift for family and friends.
    I squealed with laughter reading your excerpt–I wish my dad was still alive to enjoy.
    Thanks for writing about the “real Florida” that so few residents know since times have changed immensely in the past 40-50 years in our state. We are fortunate to have your account of the sometimes difficult, but certainly “good ole days.”

    Thank you,
    Pam Rintz

    • Alvin says:

      Call me and I will mail it to you. After recieving it, send me check for $24 includes Tax + postage….(Or you can order it here on the website)

  7. Fain Poppell says:

    I met Alvin when he came to North Florida to do some development work. He loaned me his old motor grader once, and it almost broke by arm with the hydralic system being what it was. Alvin is a great friend and I could just see him sitting around the campfire telling all these stories! Thanks friend for a great read.

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  9. Ronnie Alderman says:

    I’m a alderman my papa was born off Charlie talyor and swindle I want a copy of this of my family history too

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