With its famously rocky coastline, harsh winters and forested interior; Maine lies farther northeast than any other state in America. The state is home to Acadia National Park, a coastline dotted with iconic lighthouses and the end-point of the Appalachian Trail. These dramatic landscapes come to life in this selection of books set in Maine.
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Books Set in Maine: Introduction
This list of books set in Maine is rather diverse, though there is a definite lean towards horror. This could be thanks to the influence of Stephen King, a local who has penned many books set in Maine. Having written over 60 novels, only a selection are listed here; including works such as Carrie, Salem’s Lot and the truly horrifying It.
Some other well-known books set in Maine include The Cider House Rules (a bildungsroman later adapted into an Academy Award winning film), Empire Falls (a Pulitzer Prize winner, later adapted into a miniseries) and Olive Kitteridge (another Pulitzer Prize winner, also adapted into a miniseries that won multiple Emmys).
Fun fact: One of the best-selling novels of the 20th century, Uncle Tom’s Cabin was written by Harriet Beecher Stowe while in Maine. The novel however, is set in Louisiana and Kentucky.
Books Set in Maine: Shortlist
If you’re short on time, these are my personal picks for books set in Maine:
- The Cider House Rules by John Irving
- The Weight of Water by Anita Shreve
- Amy and Isabelle by Elizabeth Strout
- Empire Falls by Richard Russo
- Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout
- The Love Goddess’ Cooking School by Melissa Senate
- Maine by J. Courtney Sullivan
- Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline
- A Piece of the World by Christina Baker Kline
- The Stars Are Fire by Anita Shreve
- The Guest Book by Sarah Blake
Books Set in Maine
1. The Country of the Pointed Firs by Sarah Orne Jewett, 1896
The Country of the Pointed Firs, is a concisely written and beautifully wrought episodic novel of a young woman writer’s summer sojourn in the Maine fishing village of Dunnet Landing. Through Jewett, the young woman conveys the effect of her deepening connections to the people of Dunnet Landing, especially the sibylline Mrs. Todd, and her empathy with the mysteries of the coastal life, one where the land and the sea have equal influence.
2. Arundel (Chronicles of Arundel #1) by Kenneth Roberts, 1930
This is the classic series from Pulitzer Prize-winning historical novelist Kenneth Roberts, all featuring characters from the town of Arundel, Maine. Arundel follows Steven Nason as he joins Benedict Arnold in his march to Quebec during the American Revolution.
3. Lost on a Mountain in Maine by Donn Fendler, 1939
Based on the true account of a boy’s harrowing journey through the vast wilderness of the Katahdin Mountains, Lost on a Mountain in Maine is a gripping survival story for all ages. Twelve-year-old Donn Fendler steps away from his Boy Scout troop for only a minute, but in the foggy mountains of Maine, a minute is all it takes. After hours of trying to find his way back, a nervous and tired Donn falls down an embankment, making it impossible for him to be found.
4. Hell House by Richard Matheson, 1971
Regarded as the Mount Everest of haunted houses, Belasco House has witnessed scenes of almost unimaginable horror and depravity. Two previous expeditions to investigate its secrets met with disaster, the participants destroyed by murder, suicide or insanity. Now a new investigation has been mounted – four strangers, each with his or her own reason for daring the unknown torments and temptations of the mansion.
5. Carrie by Stephen King, 1974
A modern classic, Carrie introduced a distinctive new voice in American fiction – Stephen King. The story of misunderstood high school girl Carrie White, her extraordinary telekinetic powers, and her violent rampage of revenge, remains one of the most barrier-breaking and shocking novels of all time.
6. Salem’s Lot by Stephen King, 1975
Thousands of miles away from the small township of ‘Salem’s Lot, two terrified people, a man and a boy, still share the secrets of those clapboard houses and tree-lined streets. They must return to ‘Salem’s Lot for a final confrontation with the unspeakable evil that lives on in the town.
7. The Dawning of the Day (Lover’s Trilogy #1) by Elisabeth Ogilvie, 1976
This is the first novel in the second trilogy about Bennett’s Island, brings the saga of the three lonely women who come to the island seeking happiness and self-discovery.
8. The Cider House Rules by John Irving, 1985
Raised from birth in the orphanage at St. Cloud’s, Maine, Homer Wells has become the protege of Dr. Wilbur Larch, its physician and director. There Dr. Larch cares for the troubled mothers who seek his help, either by delivering and taking in their unwanted babies or by performing illegal abortions. Meticulously trained by Dr. Larch, Homer assists in the former, but draws the line at the latter. Then a young man brings his beautiful fiancee to Dr. Larch for an abortion, and everything about the couple beckons Homer to the wide world outside the orphanage.
9. The Beans of Egypt, Maine (Egypt, Maine #1) by Carolyn Chute, 1985
There are families like the Beans all over America. They live on the wrong side of town in mobile homes strung with Christmas lights all year around. The women are often pregnant, the men drunk and just out of jail, and the children too numerous to count. In the ‘Beans of Egypt’, Maine, we meet the God-fearing Earlene Pomerleau and experience her obsession for the whole swarming Bean tribe.
10. It by Stephen King, 1987
Welcome to Derry, Maine. It’s a small city, a place as hauntingly familiar as your own hometown. Only in Derry the haunting is real. They were seven teenagers when they first stumbled upon the horror. Now they are grown-up men and women who have gone out into the big world to gain success and happiness. But none of them can withstand the force that has drawn them back to Derry to face the nightmare without an end, and the evil without a name. Note: this one is set all across the United States.
11. The Maine Woods by Henry David Thoreau, 1988
Over a period of three years, Thoreau made three trips to the largely unexplored woods of Maine. He climbed mountains, paddled a canoe by midnight, and dined on cedar beer, hemlock tea, and moose tips. Taking notes constantly, Thoreau was just as likely to turn his observant eye to the habits and languages of the Abnaki Indians or the arduous life of the logger as he was to the workings of nature.
12. Deadline (Jack McMorrow Mystery #1) by Gerry Boyle, 1993
This is hardworking Maine, poverty Maine, where the local economy of the town of Androscoggin is ruled by the paper mill. It’s where Jack McMorrow, a former “New York Times” metro reporter has come to take over the local weekly. When a seemingly friendless and ineffective staff photographer is found drowned in the river, McMorrow wonders why, and wonders why the local police don’t wonder more. Note: this is part of an 11 book series.
13. A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail by Bill Bryson, 1997
The Appalachian Trail stretches from Georgia to Maine and covers some of the most breathtaking terrain in America – majestic mountains, silent forests, sparking lakes. If you’re going to take a hike, it’s probably the place to go. And Bill Bryson is surely the most entertaining guide you’ll find. He introduces us to the history and ecology of the trail and to some of the other hardy (or just foolhardy) folks he meets along the way – and a couple of bears. Note: this one travels along the Appalachian Trail which passes through 14 states.
14. The Weight of Water by Anita Shreve, 1997
A newspaper photographer, Jean, researches the lurid and sensational ax murder of two women in 1873 as an editorial tie-in with a brutal modern double murder. She discovers a cache of papers that appear to give an account of the murders by an eyewitness. The plot weaves between the narrative of the eyewitness and Jean’s private struggle with jealousies and suspicions as her marriage teeters.
15. The Dead Cat Bounce (Home Repair is Homicide #1) by Sarah Graves, 1997
Since she bought her rambling old fixer-upper of a house, Jacobia Tiptree has gotten used to finding things broken. But her latest problem isn’t so easily repaired. Along with the rotting floor joists and sagging support beams, there’s the little matter of the dead man in Jake’s storeroom, an ice pick firmly planted in his cranium. Note: this is part of a 16 book series.
16. Amy and Isabelle by Elizabeth Strout, 1998
In her stunning first novel Amy and Isabelle, Elizabeth Strout evokes a teenager’s alienation from her distant mother – and a parent’s rage at the discovery of her daughter’s sexual secrets. In most ways, Isabelle and Amy are like any mother and her 16-year-old daughter, a fierce mix of love and loathing exchanged in their every glance. And eating, sleeping, and working side by side in the gossip-ridden mill town of Shirley Falls doesn’t help matters. But when Amy is discovered behind the steamed-up windows of a car with her math teacher, the vast and icy distance between mother and daughter becomes unbridgeable.
17. Grange House by Sarah Blake, 2000
Maisie Thomas spends every summer at Grange House, a hotel on the coast of Maine ruled by the elegant Miss Grange. In 1896, when Maisie turns 17, her visit marks a turning point. On the morning after her arrival, local fishermen make a gruesome discovery: drowned lovers, found clasped in each other’s arms. It’s only the first in a series of events that casts a shadow over Maisie’s summer.
18. Stern Men by Elizabeth Gilbert, 2000
Off the coast of Maine, Ruth Thomas is born into a feud fought for generations by two groups of local lobstermen over fishing rights for the waters that lie between their respective islands. At eighteen, she has returned from boarding school-smart as a whip, feisty, and irredeemably unromantic-determined to throw over her education and join the “stern men”working the lobster boats.
19. Edinburgh by Alexander Chee, 2001
Twelve-year-old Fee is a gifted Korean-American soprano in a boys’ choir in Maine whose choir director reveals himself to be a serial pedophile. Fee and his friends are forced to bear grief, shame, and pain that endure long after the director is imprisoned. Fee survives even as his friends do not, but a deep-seated horror and dread accompany him through his self-destructive college days and after.
20. Empire Falls by Richard Russo, 2001
Miles Roby has been slinging burgers at the Empire Grill for 20 years, a job that cost him his college education and much of his self-respect. What keeps him there? It could be his bright, sensitive daughter Tick, who needs all his help surviving the local high school. Or maybe it’s Janine, Miles’ soon-to-be ex-wife, who’s taken up with a noxiously vain health-club proprietor. Or perhaps it’s the imperious Francine Whiting, who owns everything in town–and seems to believe that “everything” includes Miles himself. In Empire Falls Richard Russo delves deep into the blue-collar heart of America in a work that overflows with hilarity, heartache, and grace.
21. Ernie’s Ark by Monica Wood, 2002
The paper mill looms up from the riverbank in Abbott Falls, Maine, a town once drenched with ordinary hopes and dreams, now praying for a small drop of good fortune. Ernie Whitten, a pipe fitter, was three weeks away from a pension-secured retirement when the union went on strike eight months ago. Now his wife Marie is ill. Struck with sudden inspiration, Ernie builds a giant ark in his backyard.
22. Perfect Match by Jodi Picoult, 2003
In the course of her everyday work, career-driven assistant district attorney Nina Frost prosecutes child molesters and works determinedly to ensure that a legal system with too many loopholes keeps these criminals behind bars. But when her own five-year-old son, Nathaniel, is traumatized by a sexual assault, Nina and her husband, Caleb, a quiet and methodical stone mason, are shattered, ripped apart by an enraging sense of helplessness in the face of a futile justice system that Nina knows all too well.
23. Wild Rose (Wild Rose Series #1) by Ruth Axtell Morren, 2004
All her life, Geneva Patterson was an outcast in Haven’s End. Plain, awkward, thought to be unmarriageable, she endured the townspeople’s cruel taunts in solitude. But then she encountered a man who made her dream of more. Once a respected sea captain, Caleb Phelps had been accused of a shameful crime. He still held his head high, but pain shone in his eyes.
24. The Summer Guest by Justin Cronin, 2004
On an evening in late summer, the great financier Harry Wainwright, nearing the end of his life, arrives at a rustic fishing camp in a remote area of Maine. He comes bearing two things: his wish for a day of fishing in a place that has brought him solace for thirty years, and an astonishing bequest that will forever change the lives of those around him.
25. The Tenth Circle by Jodi Picoult, 2006
Fourteen-year-old Trixie Stone is in love for the first time. She’s also the light of her father, Daniel’s life – a straight-A student; a pretty, popular freshman in high school; a girl who’s always seen her father as a hero. That is, until her world is turned upside down with a single act of violence. Suddenly everything Trixie has believed about her family – and herself – seems to be a lie. Could the boyfriend who once made Trixie wild with happiness have been the one to end her childhood forever? Note: this one is set between Maine and Alaska.
26. Murder on the Rocks (A Gray Whale Inn Mystery #1) by Karen MacInerney, 2006
Natalie Barnes buys the Gray Whale Inn, a bed and breakfast in Maine, and publicly opposes Bernard Katz’s proposed resort development, which threatens a colony of black-chinned terns, and when Katz is found dead, Natalie must find the true killer in order to clear her own name. Note: this is a part of a 9 book series.
27. Abide With Me by Elizabeth Strout, 2006
In the late 1950s, in the small town of West Annett, Maine, a minister struggles to regain his calling, his family, and his happiness in the wake of profound loss. At the same time, the community he has served so charismatically must come to terms with its own strengths and failings – faith and hypocrisy, loyalty and abandonment – when a dark secret is revealed.
28. Generation Loss (Cass Neary #1) by Elizabeth Hand, 2007
Cass Neary made her name in the 1970s as a photographer embedded in the burgeoning punk movement in New York City. Her pictures of the musicians and hangers on, the infamous, the damned, and the dead, got her into art galleries and a book deal. But thirty years later she is adrift, on her way down, and almost out. Then an old acquaintance sends her on a mercy gig to interview a famously reclusive photographer who lives on an island in Maine.
29. Among Other Things, I’ve Taken Up Smoking by Aoibheann Sweeney, 2007
An arresting new literary talent addresses the journey of light years – or is it a hop – from an island in Maine to the island of Manhattan. Miranda’s father has always seemed to her as obscure and elusive as the thick New England fog that surrounds their isolated island home. When she was three years old, her parents moved from Manhattan to tiny Crab Island off the coast of Maine so he could work on his translation of Ovid’s Metamorphoses. Note: this is set between Maine and New York.
30. Olive Kitteridge (Olive Kitteridge #1) by Elizabeth Strout, 2008
At times stern, at other times patient, at times perceptive, at other times in sad denial, Olive Kitteridge, a retired schoolteacher, deplores the changes in her little town of Crosby, Maine, and in the world at large, but she doesn’t always recognize the changes in those around her: a lounge musician haunted by a past romance; a former student who has lost the will to live; Olive’s own adult child, who feels tyrannized by her irrational sensitivities; and her husband, Henry, who finds his loyalty to his marriage both a blessing and a curse.
31. Tinkers by Paul Harding, 2008
An old man lies dying. Propped up in his living room and surrounded by his children and grandchildren, George Washington Crosby drifts in and out of consciousness, back to the wonder and pain of his impoverished childhood in Maine. As the clock repairer’s time winds down, his memories intertwine with those of his father, an epileptic, itinerant peddler and his grandfather, a Methodist preacher beset by madness.
32. The Poacher’s Son (Mike Bowditch #1) by Paul Doiron, 2010
Game warden Mike Bowditch returns home one evening to find a cryptic message on his answering machine from his father, Jack, who he hasn’t heard from in two years. The next morning Mike gets a call from the police: a beloved local cop has been killed and his father is their prime suspect. Note: this is part of a series that currently has 10 titles.
33. The Love Goddess’ Cooking School by Melissa Senate, 2010
Holly Maguire’s grandmother Camilla was the Love Goddess of Blue Crab Island, Maine – a Milanese fortune-teller who could predict the right man for you, and whose Italian cooking was rumored to save marriages. Holly has been waiting years for her unlikely fortune: her true love will like sa cordula, an unappetizing old-world delicacy. But Holly can’t make a decent marinara sauce, let alone sa cordula. Maybe that’s why the man she hopes to marry breaks her heart.
34. Maine by J. Courtney Sullivan, 2011
For the Kellehers, Maine is a place where children run in packs, showers are taken outdoors, and old Irish songs are sung around a piano. Their beachfront property, won on a barroom bet after the war, sits on three acres of sand and pine nestled between stretches of rocky coast, with one tree bearing the initials “A.H.” At the cottage, built by Kelleher hands, cocktail hour follows morning mass, nosy grandchildren snoop in drawers, and decades-old grudges simmer beneath the surface.
35. Beacon’s Call (Miracles of Marble Cove #4) by Leslie Gould, 2011
As a busy summer winds down, Beverly wrestles with the decision whether to make Marble Cove her permanent home. Can she leave Augusta for good and embrace a new life in this small town? Meanwhile, Diane rejoices when a publisher offers to buy her first novel. So why don’t her friends seem to share in her excitement? Shelley is occupied with starting her baking business- and preoccupied by Dan’s strange hours at work. Why is he working so many late-night shifts?
36. The Truth of All Things (Archie Lean #1) by Kieran Shields, 2012
When newly appointed Deputy Marshal Archie Lean is called in to investigate a prostitute’s murder in Portland, Maine, he’s surprised to find the body laid out like a pentagram and pinned to the earth with a pitchfork. He’s even more surprised to learn that this death by ‘sticking’ is a traditional method of killing a witch.
37. The Burgess Boys by Elizabeth Strout, 2013
Haunted by the freak accident that killed their father when they were children, Jim and Bob Burgess escaped from their Maine hometown of Shirley Falls for New York City as soon as they possibly could. Jim, a sleek, successful corporate lawyer, has belittled his bighearted brother their whole lives, and Bob, a Legal Aid attorney who idolizes Jim, has always taken it in stride. But their long-standing dynamic is upended when their sister, Susan – the Burgess sibling who stayed behind – urgently calls them home.
38. Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline, 2013
Nearly eighteen, Molly Ayer knows she has one last chance. Just months from “aging out” of the child welfare system, and close to being kicked out of her foster home, a community service position helping an elderly woman clean out her home is the only thing keeping her out of juvie and worse. Vivian Daly has lived a quiet life on the coast of Maine. But in her attic, hidden in trunks, are vestiges of a turbulent past. As she helps Vivian sort through her possessions and memories, Molly discovers that she and Vivian aren’t as different as they seem to be.
39. The Good Luck Girls of Shipwreck Lane by Kelly Harms, 2013
For heartbroken Janine “Janey” Brown, this announcement has the hallmarks of one of her Aunt Midge’s harebrained plans to lure her from her tiny kitchen, where she’s been submerging her grief in the pursuit of the perfect pot-au-feu. Meanwhile, across town, Janine “Nean” Brown couldn’t be more thrilled. She just knows that this house is her destiny, the chance to escape the latest in her revolving door of crappy jobs and drunken boyfriends. When both Janine Browns descend on Christmas Cove, Maine, to claim the prize they both think is theirs, however, they discover that more than just a dream home awaits them at the water’s edge.
40. The Remedy for Love: A Novel by Bill Roorbach, 2014
When the “Storm of the Century” threatens western Maine, Eric closes his law office early and heads to the grocery store. In line ahead of him, an unkempt and seemingly unstable young woman comes up short on cash, so Eric offers her twenty bucks and a ride home. Trouble is, Danielle doesn’t really have a home. She’s squatting in a cabin deep in the woods: no electricity, no plumbing, no heat.
41. The Lobster Kings by Alexi Zentner, 2014
The Kings family has lived on Loosewood Island for three hundred years. Now, Woody Kings, the leader of the island’s lobster fishing community and the family patriarch, teeters on the throne, and Cordelia, the oldest of Woody’s three daughters, stands to inherit the crown. To do so, however, she must defend her island from meth dealers from the mainland, while navigating sibling rivalry and the vulnerable nature of her own heart when she falls in love with her sternman.
42. The Kind Worth Killing by Peter Swanson, 2015
A devious tale of psychological suspense involving sex, deception, and an accidental encounter that leads to murder. On a night flight from London to Boston, Ted Severson meets the stunning and mysterious Lily Kintner. Sharing one too many martinis, the strangers begin to play a game of truth, revealing very intimate details about themselves. Ted talks about his marriage that’s going stale and his wife Miranda, who he’s sure is cheating on him.
43. Tall Tales from the Tall Pines by Christian P Potholm, 2015
As a Maine Guide for 20 years and a hunter and fisherman since childhood, Christian Potholm knows the woods and waters of Maine from the coast to the North Woods. He brings it all to life with these humorous tales, astonishing and intriguing characters, and real-life dialogue. These are authentic, how-they-talk, what-they-do, Maine hunting and fishing stories with Maine guides, wardens, and sports, all presented in full blossom.
44. Enchanted August by Brenda Bowen, 2015
On a dreary spring day in Brooklyn, Lottie Wilkes and Rose Arbuthnot spot an ad on their children’s preschool bulletin board: Hopewell Cottage. Little Lost Island, Maine. Old, pretty cottage to rent on a small island. Springwater, blueberries, sea glass. August. Neither can afford it, but they are smitten – Lottie could use a break from her overbearing husband and Rose from her relentless twins. On impulse, they decide to take the place and attract two others to share the steep rent.
45. The State We’re In: Maine Stories by Ann Beattie, 2015
Many of these stories are set in Maine, but The State We’re In is about more than geographical location, and certainly is not a picture postcard of the coastal state. Some characters have arrived by accident, others are trying to get out. The collection opens, closes, and is interlaced with stories that focus on Jocelyn, a wryly disaffected teenager living with her aunt and uncle while attending summer school. As in life, the narratives of other characters interrupt Jocelyn’s, sometimes challenging, sometimes embellishing her view.
46. Goodnight, Beautiful Women by Anna Noyes, 2016
Moving along the Maine Coast and beyond, the interconnected stories in Goodnight, Beautiful Women bring us into the sultry, mysterious inner lives of New England women and girls as they navigate the dangers and struggles of their outer worlds. With novelistic breadth and a quicksilver emotional intelligence, Noyes explores the ruptures and vicissitudes of growing up and growing old, and shines a light on our most uncomfortable impulses while masterfully charting the depths of our murky desires.
47. The Miracle on Monhegan Island by Elizabeth Kelly, 2016
Maine’s rugged, picturesque Monhegan Island is home to weathered lobster fishermen and curious tourists… a genial if sleepy group. But when Spark Monahan – rakish prodigal son – returns unannounced to the dilapidated family home, his arrival launches a summer the likes of which this quiet town has never seen.
48. The River at Night by Erica Ferencik, 2017
A high-stakes drama set against the harsh beauty of the Maine wilderness, charting the journey of four friends as they fight to survive the aftermath of a white water rafting accident, The River at Night is a nonstop and unforgettable thriller.
49. A Piece of the World by Christina Baker Kline, 2017
To Christina Olson, the entire world was her family’s remote farm in the small coastal town of Cushing, Maine. Born in the home her family had lived in for generations, and increasingly incapacitated by illness, Christina seemed destined for a small life. Instead, for more than twenty years, she was host and inspiration for the artist Andrew Wyeth, and became the subject of one of the best known American paintings of the twentieth century.
50. The Stars Are Fire by Anita Shreve, 2017
In October 1947, after a summer-long drought, fires break out all along the Maine coast from Bar Harbor to Kittery and are soon racing out of control from town to village. Five months pregnant, Grace Holland is left alone to protect her two toddlers when her husband, Gene, joins the volunteer firefighters. Along with her best friend, Rosie, and Rosie’s two young children, Grace watches helplessly as their houses burn to the ground, the flames finally forcing them all into the ocean as a last resort.
51. The Stranger in the Woods: The Extraordinary Story of the Last True Hermit by Michael Finkel, 2017
In 1986, a shy and intelligent twenty-year-old named Christopher Knight left his home in Massachusetts, drove to Maine, and disappeared into the forest. He would not have a conversation with another human being until nearly three decades later, when he was arrested for stealing food. Living in a tent even through brutal winters, he had survived by his wits and courage, developing ingenious ways to store edibles and water, and to avoid freezing to death.
52. Miss Portland by David Ebenbach, 2017
After years of medicated struggle, 34-year-old Zoe quits her office job and moves into a trailer with her boyfriend in rural Maine against her family’s wishes and her doctor’s advice. After all, she has big plans with Gordy, a goateed vegetarian with thoughtful eyes and a job at a yoga studio and, as it turns out, an unfortunate desire to always be in control.
53. Among the Shadows (Detective Byron #1) by Bruce Robert Coffin, 2018
Fall in Portland, Maine usually arrives as a welcome respite from summer’s sweltering temperatures and, with the tourists gone, a return to normal life – usually. But when a retired cop is murdered, things heat up quickly, setting the city on edge. Detective Sergeant John Byron, a second-generation cop, is tasked with investigating the case – at the very moment his life is unraveling.
54. How It Happened by Michael Koryta, 2018
Kimberly Crepeaux is no good, a notorious jailhouse snitch, teen mother, and heroin addict whose petty crimes are well-known to the rural Maine community where she lives. So when she confesses to her role in the brutal murders of Jackie Pelletier and Ian Kelly, the daughter of a well-known local family and her sweetheart, the locals have little reason to believe her story.
55. Death by Chocolate Cherry Cheesecake (Death by Chocolate Mystery #1) by Sarah Graves, 2018
Life just got a little sweeter in the island fishing village of Eastport, Maine. Jacobia “Jake” Tiptree and her best friend Ellie are opening a waterfront bake shop, The Chocolate Moose, where their tasty treats pair perfectly with the salty ocean breeze. But while Jake has moved on from fixing up houses, she still can’t resist the urge to snoop into the occasional murder.
56. If She Wakes by Michael Koryta, 2019
Tara Beckley is a senior at idyllic Hammel College in Maine. As she drives to deliver a visiting professor to a conference, a horrific car accident kills the professor and leaves Tara in a vegetative state. At least, so her doctors think. In fact, she’s a prisoner of locked-in syndrome: fully alert but unable to move a muscle. Trapped in her body, she learns that someone powerful wants her dead – but why? And what can she do, lying in a hospital bed, to stop them?
57. Almost Midnight (Mike Bowditch #10) by Paul Doiron, 2019
Warden Investigator Mike Bowditch already has a troubling mystery on his hands: finding the archer who mortally wounded Maine’s only wild wolf. Then he learns his best friend, Billy Cronk, has been released from prison after heroically defending a female guard from a stabbing. Mike comes to believe the assault was orchestrated by a wider criminal conspiracy. Note: this is part of a series that currently has 10 titles.
58. The Guest Book by Sarah Blake, 2019
The Guest Book follows three generations of a powerful American family, a family that “used to run the world”. And when the novel begins in 1935, they still do. Kitty and Ogden Milton appear to have everything – perfect children, good looks, a love everyone envies. But after a tragedy befalls them, Ogden tries to bring Kitty back to life by purchasing an island in Maine. That island, and its house, come to define and burnish the Milton family, year after year after year. And it is there that Kitty issues a refusal that will haunt her till the day she dies.
59. The Last House Guest by Megan Miranda, 2019
Littleport, Maine is like two separate towns: a vacation paradise for wealthy holidaymakers and a simple harbour community for the residents who serve them. Friendships between locals and visitors are unheard of – but that’s just what happened with Avery Greer and Sadie Loman.
60. Olive, Again (Olive Kitteridge #2) by Elizabeth Strout, 2019
New York Times bestselling author and Pulitzer Prize winner Elizabeth Strout continues the life of her beloved Olive Kitteridge, a character who has captured the imaginations of millions of readers. Prickly, wry, resistant to change yet ruthlessly honest and deeply empathetic, Olive Kitteridge is ‘a compelling life force’.
What do you think of these books set in Maine?
Do you call Maine home? Know some other great books set in Maine that should be added to this list? Are you planning a visit Maine soon? I’d love to hear more about your own travels and tips for books set in Maine in the comments below!
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