Well, not in real life: I’ve arrived in the New England state on my reading journey of the United States. I finished reading Louisiana, and now I get to move on to Maine — in winter!
We lived in Maine one winter and I loved it: snow piled to the eaves, icicles dripping nearly to the ground. I am eager to disappear into a wintry novel set there. I adore reading bitter cold books in winter (try Winter’s Bone or The Shipping News if you’re into that, too).
I’ve scoured Goodreads looking for books set in Maine and written by Maine authors, and I will definitely read Olive Kitteridge again. That book is phenomenal, and it gets better with every read.
He rode with the window partly open because he loved the smell of the pines and the heavy salt air, and in the winter he loved the smell of the cold.
— Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth strout
But the other award-winners, Tinkers by Paul Harding and Empire Falls by Richard Russo, those books weren’t for me. I really wanted to like Tinkers — look at that cover! — but I remember it being a slog even though it was really short. I don’t think I got through more than 100 pages of Empire Falls.
My Goodreads and TripFiction searches also revealed books mainly set in summer in Maine, which would be okay too, I suppose, but I’m really looking forward to reading a January Maine, not a June.
My searches have also revealed zero authors of color from Maine. I am struggling to find any books set in Maine by a non-Caucasian author. Please, if you know of one, let me know.
Right now, with Christmas only two days away, I’m in the mood for a cozy mystery, maybe involving a café or a bakery, and definitely on the coast of Maine. I’ll be shocked if I can’t find one of those. After that, though, what should I read? What are your favorite books set in Maine?