Strange Maine: True Tales from the Pine Tree State

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Press: The History Press (April 30, 2010)
Author Name:Souliere, Michelle Y.


Maine is well known as a land of fresh air and clean water, as the home of L.L. 
Bean and as one of the most popular camping and outdoor recreation destinations in the country.
But what lies behind this idyllic facade? Unmapped roads.
Whispering rocks.
Deadening fog.
Ghost pirates.
Lonely islands.
THINGS in the woods.
This is the great state of Maine, home of Stephen King, land of the Great Northern Woods and all the mystery that lies within their dark footprint.
What better setting than this for tales of strange creatures, murderers, madmen and eccentric hermits? From the "Headless Halloween of 1940" to the mystery of who lies in the grave of V.P.
Coolidge; from Bigfoot sightings to the "witch's grave" in a Portland cemetery, writer and illustrator Michelle Souliere brings to life these strange-but-true tales from the Pine Tree State.


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Comment List (Total:5)

  •     Very fascinating and engaging stories from the Pine Tree state. It has encouraged me to want to spend more time exploring these stories by heading out on a Maine road trip off the beaten trail
  •     really enjoyed reading it .. very strange things you would not know.
  •     Michelle Souliere has written a little gem. For those that are tired of recycled material that anyone can find on the Internet about all the "weird things" in Maine, this is the book for you.Souliere, as opposed to the writers of so many quickie regional books you see hitting the market nowadays, has done backbreaking work in old newspaper archives, small out-of-the-way libraries, and face-to-face interviews with the folks who have had the encounters she writes about. She is to be congratulated for going where few have feared to go in the State of Maine, and returning to bring her readership a bushel basket full of great stories.You can't go wrong with this one folks, and it couldn't have come from a nicer person, whose folksiness and humanity comes through her words on the pages here.Pick it up today.
  •     I bought this book and set it loose on the Appalachian Trail. Loved the book. Loved the bookseller. Now the book is haunting the woods of Maine.
  •     This review has been editeed and is originally posted on [...].Can a blog turn in to a book? Sure! Michelle Souliere has written a fantastic little book, Strange Maine, drawing largely on her blog [...]The book is a small treasure chest!Souliere's humor is sprinkled generously throughout the book. Her introduction assures readers that her book should not -- ever -- never ever! -- be used for trespassing. This peaks the readers interest at once. Where am I not supposed to go?Souliere offers energetic prose and a refreshing attention to details. Her writing style is chatty, like she's talking to a good friend about a beloved subject. You can sense her passion as she shares these strange stories about her home state.Souliere does a good job documenting her sources. Personally, I get tired of chasing end notes and footnotes. And I get very annoyed at the author who could just care less. Souliere discloses her sources right in the text of the book itself. So, as you read, she explains where she found an item, and then moves forward with her quote or retelling.Souliere wastes no time taking the reader straight into the heart of strange Maine. Or, more appropriately, spooky Maine. She gives a haunting tour of several graveyards, including first hand testimony from someone who was literally chased out of the cemetery by a very angry spirit.Souliere dives into the strange history of Maine. This includes a chapter on crime (let's just say Lizzy Borden had a few country bumpkin rivals up in Maine). She gives a wonderful chapter on monsters and other odd creatures. My wife was impressed by Dr. Doves Unicorn, "cracked me up," she laughed. After a serious description of a place called "Hubcap heaven" I found myself thinking that maybe some of these people Stephen King describes in his novels aren't really so far fetched. By the way, she included directions to Hubcap Heaven, if you're interested. Throughout this book Souliere offers unique photographs that both work with her text and stand alone. They are well captioned, allowing people like me to read ahead and anticipate upcoming stories.Strange Maine and Stephen KingIf you're remotely interested in the world of Stephen King then you will be interested in the State of Maine. And Strange Maine is a great guide for those of us who can't jump in a car and explore the wonderful state. Souliere points out that Maine is known for its eccentrics. . . Like Stephen (p.18)Things that don't make sense to a Californian suddenly spring to life as Souliere explains the raw details of Maine. I had trouble with Salem's Lot partly because it was so hard for me to believe a town in America could really be that far off the beaten path. However, Souliere notes "Maine contains over 400 unorganized townships." (p.17) Suddenly Salem's Lot registered as much more interesting in my book.And where did the green glow in Tommyknockers come from? Well, Souliere has a suggestion. Of course, you must remember, to Souliere the interest is never in if something really inspired King or not, she is chasing the story itself. But this is worth a nod, okay! Interested? Check out page 34.While the book is not directly about Stephen King, it is a great resource full of insights for anyone who wants to dig just one layer deeper. My wife wants to make sure I tell everyone that it's a "fun" book. So there.

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