Book Reviews

George and Linda review books and other publications, many of which are referenced in the blogs.

Everything you want (and need) know about Ed Muskie

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 Ed Muskie – Made in Maine 1914 – 1960 by James Witherell

It’s everything you wanted to know about Ed Muskie, and then some – informative, thorough, sometimes fascinating, often entertaining. James Witherell’s new biography of Muskie, titled Ed Muskie, Maine in Maine, 1914 – 1960, published by Tilbury House, is a good read and a book I savored, perhaps because Ed Muskie touched my life in quite a few ways.

He probably touched your life in many ways too, and it’s all here, in detail, perhaps because Witherell grew up in Muskie’s home town of Rumford, giving him a real sense of where the man came from, or maybe just because Jim loves history and writing and was willing to do the tremendous amount of research to capture Maine’s most famous politician in a way no one else has done – even Muskie in his own autobiography.

It's time to celebrate Tom Hennessey's new book - and you are invited!

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 Tom Hennessey has combined a talent for art and the skills of an outdoor writer to create his own special place in Maine. In Leave Some For Seed, his new book published this month by Islandport Press, he’s done it again, with wonderful stories and amazing drawings and paintings.

On Thursday, August 28, from 6 pm to 8 pm, you are invited to a celebration for Tom’s new book at the Penobscot Country Conservation Association in Brewer. Tom will decorate the club house with his art, there will be a plentiful supply of beverages and food, and best of all, you can get an autographed copy of the book and hear Tom talk about it.  It’s going to be a lot of fun and I encourage you to join us that night.

Your pet is unhealthy and unhappy, says former Veterinarian

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Got a pet? Former Veterinarian Charles Danten says he or she is probably unhealthy and definitely unhappy. Perhaps that smile you see on your pet’s face is actually a grimace.

Slaves of our Affection, subtitled The Myth of the Happy Pet, exposes the dark and disastrous underbelly of the pet world. And it ain’t pretty.

He killed 1000 deer using dogs

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 “The year 1805 will long be remembered on account of the advent of the wolves from Canada to the State of Maine and other parts of New England. They came in droves, and their howling was a terror to everyone.”

This important event may not be remembered these days, but it won’t be forgotten either, thanks to a valuable new book, Early Maine Wildlife, by William Krohne and Christopher Hoving, published in 2010 by the University of Maine Press.

Drawing from old magazines, journals, and government reports, Krohne and Hoving compiled fascinating accounts about Canada lynx, moose, mountain lions, white-tailed deer, wolverines, wolves, and woodland caribou in the period from 1603 to 1930. Most of the references fall between 1830 and 1930, a period rich with sportsmen’s publications and journals.

You won't forget The Fog of Forgetting

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 You won’t forget The Fog of Forgetting

The Fog of Forgetting is not about me. Yes, I have forgotten more than I remember. But this book is an imaginative journey by a group of kids to a mysterious mythical fog covered island.

The book, published by Islandport Press, was written for young adults, so I guess I don’t even qualify as a reader. I haven’t been a young adult for about 40 years. But I liked the book too!

It’s got to be hard to write dialogue of young children, but author Genevieve Morgan does so superbly. And her plot had me racing through the book.

The Old Woman is back and wait til you read her stories!

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             The old woman hasn’t run out of stories.

The subtitle of Return of Old Maine Woman, written by Glenna Johnson Smith and published this year by Islandport Press, is Tales of Growing Up and Getting Older.

Glenna grew up in the 1920s and 30s in rural Hancock County, eventually moving to Aroostook County where she lived on a farm and taught school.

I guess you can tell from the title that Glenna is some old pleased to be an old woman.

Shooting bear cubs in their den, killing 100 trout in a day – these Old Tales of the Maine Woods will amaze and appall you

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I had been fishing for about two hours. On counting the catch, we had one hundred and thirty-seven trout.

This might be my dream fishing experience but it is not my story. Its Heber Bishop’s story, written in the Guide Book to the Megantic, Spider, and Upper Dead River Regions in 1887, and reprinted in Steve Pinkham’s amazing (and sometimes appalling) Old Tales of the Maine Woods published by Merrimak Media in 2012.

Bishop’s story continued: My heart smote me for taking so many, but we had carried them up to camp before counting them and it was too late to put any of them back then. So we did the best we could to prevent willful waste, by gutting them, building a smoke house, and giving what we did not eat that day a smoking all that afternoon, night and until noon the next day.

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