Nothing’s better than sitting on a beach, by the lake or in a chair on the front porch, reading a good book on a lazy summer day in Maine. To help with the central aspect of that scene, Yarmouth-based Islandport Press has put together a list of 10 books from its catalog that are written by Maine authors or set in the state and are particularly suited to summer.


“Random Act”

By Gerry Boyle

Author Gerry Boyle’s iconic reporter-turned-amateur-detective Jack McMorrow is back for a 12th time in “Random Act,” a mystery that takes readers to a darker side of Down East Maine. In this follow-up to the award-winning “Straw Man,” Jack’s routine errand to a local hardware store finds him witnessing a senseless murder that will have vicious reprecussions.



“Closer All the Time”

By Jim Nichols

In a book that won the Maine Literary Award for Best Fiction, Jim Nichols strings together the bittersweet stories of people bound by shared geography and the insular nature of small-town life to deliver quick moving, compelling stories that pack a lasting emotional wallop. Gritty, authentic and wonderful.


“This Time Might be Different: Stories of Maine”

By Elaine Ford


Award-winning writer Elaine Ford’s collection of 15 stories features deftly drawn characters who contemplate difficult choices. These stories may feature a trace of dark humor, a sinister underpinning or profound irony, but all feature the terrain of Maine as they explore larger emotional landscapes.



“Settling Twice”

By Deborah Joy Corey

In a book of clarity and faith, Deborah Joy Corey probes the complex bonds between family, lovers, and neighbors that shaped her sense of identity, both growing up in rural New Brunswick, and as a wife and mother living on the coast of Maine.



“Whatever it Takes: Seven Decades of True Love, Hard Work, and No Regrets”

By May Davidson

For nearly 70 years, May and Jim Davidson shared an unbreakable love of Maine and a relentless drive to do whatever it took to live their dream life on their farm. Their story reads like a history of Maine hardwork; whether lobster fishing, raising chickens and sheep, operating a trap mill, driving a long-haul truck, or inventing Maine Country Wind Bells, theirs is a story of true love and perseverance.


“Wayfarer: A Memoir”


By James S. Rockefeller Jr.

In this vividly wrought memoir, James S. Rockefeller recalls the moments and milestones in a long, adventurous life, including when his heart was stolen by children’s author Margaret Wise Brown. Rockefeller, who lives in Camden, writes the remembrance of a time gone by with the perspective of a 20th-century wayfarer: a voyager on the seas of time.


Young Adult/Middle Reader


“The Door to January”


By Gillian French

Breakthrough author Gillian French skillfully weaves together the themes of small-town bullies, unsolved murders, time travel and the force of the spirit in this gripping paranormal thriller set in Maine. Called “chilling and suspenseful” by Kirkus Reviews.



By Gail Donovan

When fifth-grader Atticus Finch Martin uncovers a plea for help, he is determined to come to the aid of the mystery notewriter. But when his quest turns out to be harder than expected, Finch loses his best friend and a field trip to Dinosaur State Park. Author Gail Donovan gets inside the hearts and minds of fifth-graders on this journey told with unexpected humor and impressive insight.




“A Moose and a Lobster Walk into a Bar”

By John McDonald

A now-classic collection of traditional stories that stands as one of the most popular books of Maine humor ever written. John McDonald, inspired by such humor legends as Marshall Dodge and Kendall Morse, infuses his book with tall tales, stretched truths and wry observations.



“Suddenly, the Cider Didn’t Taste So Good: Adventures of a Game Warden in Maine”

By John Ford Sr.

A former game warden and sheriff, John Ford was a gifted storyteller and his book is a collection of true tales, both humorous and serious, from the trenches of law enforcement, as well as heartwarming stories of rescuing animals.


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