Monday, March 16, 2020


Hello Friends,
according to US health experts, the next two weeks are critical in slowing the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
For the safety of our customers, and our staff, we will be closed to browsing temporarily.
We do encourage telephone and email orders.
We will be here between 10 AM and 2 PM Mon-Sat to take phone calls. We will also offer curbside delivery (drive or walk-by) for those hours, and will offer free media mail shipping and, in some cases, free home delivery.
call us at 729-5083
or email us:
We are sorry for the inconvenience!
Stay well, stay home, read books!
Beth and Gary

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Holiday Letter 2019

Terry Tempest Williams at Gulf of Maine Books, Nov. 15, 2019

Hello Friends!
Gulf of Maine Books has been open now for 40 years, and we are still excited to offer you a wide selection for Holiday shopping. Once again we have advent calendars, boxed Christmas and holiday cards, wall and engagement calendars, gift certificates and even "Bye Bye Susan" magnetic bumper stickers. Starting the day after Thanksgiving, we will be open every day until Christmas. We encourage special orders for the Holiday season, but ask that we receive your requests by December 15 to give us time to get the books in for you.
We will be having one in-store author event before Christmas. Scott Hanson (of Topsham) will be at the store on Sunday, Dec.22, 4 PM, presenting his terrific new book "Restoring Your Historic House: The Comprehensive Guide for Homeowners".
We are also excited about two events coming up during the winter: On Jan. 18, at 4 PM, we will have two authors - Cynthia Anderson and her new book "Home Now - how 6000 refugees transformed an American Town" (Lewiston), and Abdi Nor Iftin - with his new book "Call Me American". On March 24, 7 PM at the Curtis Library we will co-sponsor a reading and talk by Emtithal Mahmoud, originally from Darfur and now an International Poetry Slam Champion and UNHCR spokesperson - her new book of poems is "Sisters' Entrance", check out her video "Bird Watching on Lesvos Island" here!

We want to give you some idea of the range of new titles about which we are excited, and happy to share with you!
In the Maine section, that would include "All Is Calm, All Is Bright" - an anthology of Maine Christmas Stories, "Infinite Hope" - an autobiography by Ashley Bryan, "Home Now" by Cynthia Anderson, "Roughhouse Friday" by Jaed Coffin, "Hermit - the mysterious life of Jim Whyte" by Jeffrey Ryan, "Call Me American" by Abdi Nor Iftin, "Silence" by Jane Brox, "Eyes of the Moose" - a novel by Phippsburg's David Johnson, Maine humor "State of Maine, State of Mind" by Theodore Perry, David Vermette's "Distinct Alien Race" - much of which is about the Franco-American population of Brunswick, Mira Ptacin's "The In-Betweens - The Spiritualists, Mediums, and Legends of Camp Etna, Maine", Susan Kaplan's "Peary's Arctic Quest - untold stories from Robert Peary's North Pole Expedition", "Baseball's First Indian - The Story of Penobscot Legend Louis Sockalexis", John Cole's "In Maine", Tilly Laskey's "Precious and Adored - the love letters of Rose Cleveland and Evangeline Simpson Whipple", and David Pope's "Geology of the Pemaquid Region - Mid-Coast Maine".

Suggestions in the non-fiction sections include "The Body" by Bill Bryson, "Dumpty" by John Lithgow, "Educated" by Tara Westover, "Tough Love" by Susan Rice,"The Yellow House" by Sarah Broom, "Upheaval" by Jared Diamond, "Talking to Strangers" by Malcolm Gladwell, Rachel Maddow's "Blowout", two by Jill Lepore (who will speak at Bowdoin on Dec. 5) "This America" and "These Truths", Eric Foner's "The Second Founding", Rick Atkinson's "The British Are Coming - The War for America from Lexington to Princeton", and "If You Give A Pig The White House" as well as biographies of Susan Sontag, Janis Joplin, Elton John, Marie Colvin, Claude Debussey, Booker T. Jones, Alma Mahler, Virginia Woolf, Elizabeth Bishop, and Frederick Douglass.

Some hardcover fiction suggestions include: Elizabeth Strout's new "Olive Again", Margaret Atwood's "Testaments", Edna O'Brien's "Girl", Ann Patchett's "Dutch House", Polish Nobel Prize winner Olga Tokarczuk"s "Drive Your Plow Over the Bones of the Dead", John Le Carre's "Agent Running in the Field", Stephen King's "Institute", Jeanette Winterson's "Frankisstein", Ta Nehisi Coates' "Water Dancer", Ocean Vuong's "On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous", Ben Lerner's "Topeka School", "Exhalation: Stories" by Ted Chiang, and "The Starless Sea" by Erin Morgenstern.

Paperback fiction suggestions include "Overstory" by Richard Powers, "Unsheltered" by Barbara Kingsolver, "Flights" by Olga Tokarczuk, "There There" by Tommy Orange, "The Silence of the Girls" by Pat Barker, "Washington Black" by Esi Edugyan, "Tell Them of Battles, Kings, and Elephants" by Mathias Enard, two novels by Vasily Grossman - "Stalingrad" and "Life and Fate", and "The Listing Ship" by Anxo Anqueira - translated by Brunswick's Kathleen March. Some mysteries to go with that - Richard Cass' new "Last Call at the Esposito", two recent Paul Doiron titles "Almost Midnight" in hardcover and "Stay Hidden" in paperback, and two recent Louise Penny titles - "A Better Man" in hardcover and "Kingdom of the Blind" in paperback.

In the Nature/Environmental area, our suggestions include " Terry Tempest Williams:"Erosions - essays of undoing", two books by Robert MacFarlane "Underland" and "Lost Words", Naomi Klein's "On Fire - the burning case for a green new deal", "Our Wild Calling - how connecting with animals can transform our lives and save theirs" by Richard Louv, Maine Apple expert John Bunker's new "Apples and the Art of Detection", "Running with Sherman" by Christopher McDougall, two by Robin Kimmerer - "Braiding Sweetgrass" and "Gathering Moss", "Horizon" by Barry Lopez, "Falter" by Bill McKibben, "Some Stories" by Yvon Chouinard, John McPhee's "Patch", "America's Most Alarming Writer - essays on Charles Bowden", and the new anthology "A Dangerous New World - Maine voices on the Climate Crisis" with 65 poets, 27 artists, and an introduction by Governor Janet Mills.

In the poetry section, some suggestions include current US Poet Laureate Joy Harjo's new "An American Sunrise", Emtithal Mahmoud's "Sisters' Entrance", Bob Kaufman's collected poems, The Illuminated Hafiz, Carolyn Forche's memoir "What You Have Heard Is True", "Awakened Cosmos - the Mind of Classical Chinese Poetry" by David Hinton, "Milk Black Carbon" by Inupiaq poet Joan Naviyuk Kane, "Eyes Bottle Dark With A Mouthful of Flowers" by Jake Skeets, "Black Mountain Poems - an Anthology", two new books by Brunswick poets - "Near Stars" by Pam Smith and "Undertow" by Robert Breen, and several broadsides: a signed Tony Hoagland, a William Stafford, and a signed Robert Breen.
Close by in the music section we recommend Patti Smith's "Year of the Monkey", Ringo Starr's "Another Day in the Life", Ken Burns' "Country Music", Booker T Jones' "Time Is Tight", and "Trips - rock life in the sixties" by Belfast poet/author Ellen Sander.

A few suggestions in the spirituality area include Penobscot author Sherri Mitchell's "Sacred Instructions - Indigenous Wisdom for Living Spirit-Based Change", "Creation As Sacrament_ Reflections on Ecology and Spirituality" by John Chryssavgis, "Why Religion" by Elaine Pagels, Karen Armstrong's "The Lost Art of Scripture", Sister Helen Prejean's "River of Fire", Pema Chodron's new "Welcoming the Unwelcome", and Norman Fischer's "The Worl Could Be Otherwise - Imagination and the Bodhisattva Path".
A few cooking suggestions include a new edition of Mark Bittman's "How to Cook Everything" a new edition of "Joy of Cooking", Barton Seaver's "Joy of seafood", Maine's "The Lost Kitchen", and the new "Essential Ottolenghi" set.

In the kids' area we are featuring: Peter Wohlleben's "Can You Hear The Trees Talking?". Jan Brett's "Tale of the Tiger Slipper", Susan Cooper's "The Shortest Day",Tonya Shevenell's "Maine Birthday Book", Kate Allen's "Line Tender", Chris Van Dusen's "If I Built A School", Margaret Wise Brown's "A Home in the Barn", Philip Pullman's "Book of Dust, books from local authors Charlotte Agell, Maria Padian, Josephine Cameron, Cynthia Lord, Wendy Ulmer, Diane Magras (and of course Dahlov Ipcar), and the new "Dog Man - Fetch 22"

We look forward to seeing you in the bookstore, and hope that you have Happy Holidays!
Beth Leonard and Gary Lawless

Sunday, June 16, 2019

Hummus and Poetry Night

Gulf of Maine Books will host our 4th annual "Hummus and Poetry" night on Saturday, June 29, at 4PM.The event will celebrate the publishing of the anthology "Making Mirrors - Writing/Righting by and for Refugees". Our featured readers will be Sharif Elmusa and Becky Thompson. Becky Thompson is the co-editor of "Making Mirrors". She is a poet, a teacher, a scholar, and since 2015 she has been teaching poetry workshops in "camps" in Greece, meeting rafts, documenting human rights violations, and creating spaces for writers to share their work. Sharif Elmusa is a Palestinian poet,teacher, and scholar now living in Maine. He has recently published :"Flawed Landscape - selected poems" and has poems in the "Making Mirrors" anthology. Another "Hummus and Poetry" regular, Zeina Azzam, has poems in "Making Mirrors" but cannot be with us, so we hope that her brother Fateh will read her poems, and perhaps play the oud. The event is free, and open to the public, with refreshments, poetry, and good company.
Here is a poem from the "Making Mirrors" anthology:


Only they saw the waves
Only they saw the wind
as the houses collapsed
Only they dreamt of dreams
There were no birds
There were no trees
No hands to cover their eyes
No rain to record their footsteps
Only they saw their photos fading
into the walls
Only they saw their stories
hidden in the sounds of strangers
Only they
they stayed to tell us
they were never gone
they lay in their shadows
guarding their origin
their heart in every note
of every song
they stayed to tell us
there will always be
a heart in the sea
with our names

Nathalie Handal

Sunday, May 19, 2019

Poetry reading with Elizabeth Tibbetts and Pam Burr Smith

cover painting by Jon Muench

cover painting by Katherine Bradford

Gulf of Maine Books will host a reading/publishing party for two new books of poetry by Maine poets Elizabeth Tibbetts and Pam Burr Smith on Saturday, June 1, at 4pm.
Elizabeth Tibbetts' new book is "Say What You Can" - a collection of poems published by Deerbrook Editions, of Cumberland, Maine.
Pam Burr Smith's new book is "Near Stars - New and Selected Poems", published by Blackberry Books of Nobleboro, Maine.
The event is free, and open to the public.
For more information please call the bookstore at 729-5083.

Sunday, April 28, 2019

local author power trio

photo by Beth Leonard

Local author power trio at Gulf of Maine Books!
Cynthia Lord, Maria Padian, Josephine Cameron

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Julia Bouwsma reads from Midden poems

Julia Bouwsma will read from her book of poems Midden at the Curtis Memorial Library in Brunswick on Saturday, May 4, at 2 PM, with book support from Gulf of Maine Books. The poems in Midden rise up out of the historical account of Malaga Island, where in 1912 the State of Maine forcibly evicted an interracial community of roughly 45 people. Utilizing a wide range of poetic styles, Midden confronts the events and over one hundred years of silence that surround this shameful incident in Maine's history. Here is a section from "Interview with the dead", one of the poems in the collection:

How did you leave?

Our houses became our bodies - we lashed
ourselves to rafts.Our bodies became boats.
Some left as cargo in boats, boxes.
We wept or did not weep

until home became the rubble
between our teeth: the thing one cannot
bite for fear of breaking.

Then we were a people sculpted of wind,
and when we left, we scattered as breath,
lingered as breath -

then we were a people carved of gravel and dust,
and we left as the land
stripped from the land -

carrying our hearts in our fists.

Julia Bouwsma

The event is free, and open to the public.

Friday, April 19, 2019

David Vermette at Gulf of Maine

David Vermette will read from and discuss his book "A Distinct Alien Race" at Gulf of Maine Books on Tuesday, April 30, at 7 PM.
Mr. Vermette's book deals with the history of the textile industry in New England, and of the Franco Americans who worked in that industry. He uses Brunswick, Maine, as the historical example, and follows the routes of the Canadian French as they come to Brunswick to work. He gives us the histories of the Cabot and Verney mills, the Ku Klux Klan in Brunswick, the origins of the financing of the New England textile industries (slaves and opium...) and more -. The author's great great grandfather Joseph lived in Quebec, just south of Quebec City, and three of Joseph's sons came to Brunswick to work at the Cabot Mills, eventually living on Oak Street. David Vermette is a researcher, writer, and speaker on the history and identity of the descendants of French North America.
The event is free, and open to the public.