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Arts & Culture

Literature

You can get an insider's look at Maine through its literature. You can attend readings by contemporary Maine authors or participate in the annual Maine Festival of the Book in March. You can also find works by Maine writers at libraries and independent bookstores. If you're visiting with children, you can join a library story hour or take your kids to the Coastal Maine Botanical Garden, which has an entire garden dedicated to Maine-related children's literature. You can also visit the locations that may have inspired or been featured in the works of your favorite Maine authors, including:

Fiction and Nonfiction Authors

  • Stephen King: You can take a "Tommyknockers and More" tour of the horror king's hometown of Bangor.
  • Richard Russo, Empire Falls: You can visit Waterville and Skowhegan, both of which appear in Russo's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel.
  • Ernest Thompson: You can board the Great Pond Mail Boat, plying the waters of the real On Golden Pond.
  • Kenneth Roberts, Arundel: You can explore the Kennebunks to experience some of the places mentioned by the Pulitzer-winning historical novelist.
  • Harriet Beecher Stowe, Uncle Tom's Cabin: You can visit Brunswick's First Parish Church, where Stowe first heard the sermon that inspired her ground-breaking work.
  • Marguerite Yourcenar, French novelist: You can schedule a tour of the Northeast Harbor home of the first woman admitted to the Academie Francaise.
  • Rachel Carson, Silent Spring: You can visit the Nature Conservancy’s Rachel Carson Salt Pond Preserve in Edgecomb, which protects the area where she researched her 1955 book Edge of the Sea.
  • Helen and Scott Nearing, Back to the Land: You can take a tour of or attend a Monday Night Meeting at Forest Farm, the Nearings' Cape Rosier homestead.
  • Sarah Orne Jewett, Country of the Pointed Firs: A fictionalized Tenant's Harbor is the book's setting, but you can find out more about Jewett by visiting her South Berwick home.
  • Louise Dickinson Rich: We Took to the Woods, The Peninsula: You can cast a line in the Rapid River in the Rangeley Lakes region, then dip a toe in the Atlantic on the Schoodic Peninsula.
  • Elizabeth Ogilvie (High Tide at Noon, Storm Tide, The Ebbing Tide): You can take a ferry from Rockland to the offshore islands to experience Ogilvie's Tide Trilogy.
  • Ruth Moore (Spoonhandle, The Weir): You can visit The Tremont Historical Society Museum on Mt. Desert Island to begin an immersion into Moore's world.

Poets

  • Henry David Thoreau (The Maine Woods): You can paddle the Allagash, tour Moosehead Lake aboard The Kate, and maybe even climb Mt. Katahdin.
  • Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Evangeline: You can visit the St. John Valley Acadian historical sites that memorialize the heart-tugging poem.
  • Edna St. Vincent Millay, Renaesance: You can hike or drive up Camden's Mt. Battie to see the views that inspired the Pulitzer prize-winning poet.

Children's Authors

  • Robert McClosky, One Morning in Maine, Time of Wonder, Blueberries for Sal: You can visit rural Brooksville's blueberry barrens and village, which appear in McCloskey's stories.
  • E.B. White, Stuart Little, Charlotte's Web, The Trumpet of the Swan: You can explore Brooklin to see if you can spy the places that might have inspired these beloved children's books.
  • Barbara Cooney, Miss Rumphius, Island Boy, Hattie and the Wild Waves: You can loop around the Pemaquid Peninsula, home to lupine fields, island views and crashing surf.