Distant Cousin by Delia Drake

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Marti Brann is a Mainer with a great imagination. She even imagined a new name, Delia Drake, to use as author of her mystery, Distant Cousin.  But this novel is all Marti. In the brief bio of Marti in the back of the book, we learn that she has a “vivid imagination that has entertained her family for years.” And now that imagination will entertain you too.

Forced to Fish Kodiak Island’s Karluk River for Five Extra Days

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                 Kodiac Island, Alaska, is a sportsman’s dream. Years ago, when I got stranded there for five days at the mouth of the Karluk River earlier, some people didn’t believe me. Stranded in Alaska? Right!

                Traveling with Les Priest of Readfield, who organized the trip through a company he owned at that time, Alaska Outdoors Adventures, we enjoyed a five-day adventurous raft trip down the Karluk River with outfitter Fishing Alaska Style, owned by Maine native Jeff Pyska who lived in Alaska.

                Our guide for the week, Augusta, Maine resident Bob Smith, did a superb job of putting us onto lots of King Salman and keeping the river’s huge brown bears out of our tent camps.

Comprehensive hunting license was a great idea but now its dead

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For the second session in a row, the legislature has killed a proposal to create a single comprehensive hunting license.  For the price of 13 gallons of gas, you would have been able to hunt in Maine for an entire year, all game animals, all seasons, all bag limits. Representative Mike Shaw sponsored the bill, at my request.

I understand that even the best of ideas can take years to get through the legislature, so while I am disappointed, I will not give up.

Five members of the legislature’s Inland Fisheries and Wildlife supported an amended version of the bill that would have created a package of permits covering the most popular hunts, but that was quickly killed in the House of Representatives.

Great adventures, food, and cabins await you in the Forks

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Bingham
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If you enjoy great outdoor adventures, with a chance at the end of the day to return to a great meal in the lodge and a comfortable cabin, then you should head to the Forks where Northern Outdoors even offers its own popular microbrews.  

George

                Actually, you don’t have to leave the lodge for great adventures. They have a hot tub, pool, volleyball and basketball courts, indoor game and exercise rooms, and more, right on the premises. But the nearby Kennebec and Dead Rivers, and the vast forests, offer outdoor action that will thrill you, including rafting trips with Northern.

Kennebunk locals eat at the Village Tavern - and tourists too!

City or Town: 
Kennebunk
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Linda

                It’s not often that we stumble on a true gem of a restaurant, but we certainly did when the innkeeper Sarah at the Captain Jefferds Inn recommended The Village Tavern in West Kennebunk, telling us, “It’s where a lot of local people eat.” Enough said. But nothing prepared us for the over-full parking lot at 6 pm and a waiting line inside!

                We were greeted warmly by the hostess and shortly afterward by Tina, who owns the restaurant with her husband Rick, the chef. The restaurant was in full swing, with food flying out of the kitchen and the bar full as well. People giving hugs and visiting told me there were lots of regulars here.

Bradford Camps are a state treasure

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                David has hunted and fished all over the world, but Bradford Camps on Munsungan Lake is the only place he’s returned to, and he often comes here several times a year.

              The six hour drive from my home to the camps went quickly, with my friend, long-time now-retired guide Gary Corson, in the passenger seat. We shared stories and talked about fishing issues all the way, with one stop at Dysart’s for a great breakfast.

Closer All the Time by Jim Nichols

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This novel surprised me. Jim Nichols is a very good writer, well recognized for his short stories. But in Closer All the Time, Jim has woven together a group of his short stories and turned them into a compelling new novel. Most of the stories have been published before, but he wrote three new ones to link all of the others.

That works, allowing some characters to continue throughout the novel, but I actually read them as short stories, a few at a time. Each stands alone, and all are compelling, interesting, and very insightful. The setting is Baxter, Maine, a community near the coast, the time is shortly after World War Two, and the characters are very recognizable, from Early Blake, the clam digger, to Johnny Lundun, a veteran with serious problems.

Consider this, the first paragraph in the chapter titled “Early.”

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