May 6, 2012

Loving Maine-Beverly Breton Carroll

I fell in love with Maine amongst the pages of Blueberries for Sal. I was ripe to fall--my father's family was from Maine, and my paternal grandmother, Grandma Breton, was a character who, in my opinion, was totally worthy of youthful adoration. She had a way of taking us into her confidence with a wink and a lowering of her voice as she rounded up pennies from her handbag and taught us how to bet on her favorite card game Whist, or told us an off-colored joke that hinged on expelling gas. My mother was not always a fan of Grandma B's propensity to encourage elementary-aged children into dubious activities and conversations. But to me, Grandma Breton was real people; a cheerful and good woman who didn't put on airs or pretend to be anything she wasn't. I fell in love with the forthright honesty and simple decency of my father's family, veterans of small communities where people knew each other and took care of each other. This attraction to the good people of Maine would induce me to explore and fall in love with the state itself.
I am a coastal girl, and from my home in Massachusetts, within an hour I can be in Kittery where we used to visit my uncle who worked at the submarine base. Kittery is outlet haven now and a great place to shop. Up the coast a bit is the quaint town of York, home to a lovely stretch of beach and Stonewall Kitchens, popular purveyor of specialty foods and jams. Above York is Ogunquit, an adorable town with plenty of great bed and breakfasts, hotels, restaurants, shops, entertainment, a uniquely beautiful cove beach, trolley service, and number of seasonal events, including the October Oquinquit fest featuring a costume parade, high heel race and scarecrow contest.
Kennebunkport won my heart when I discovered, from an animal -loving friend visiting from Idaho, that the historic Colony Hotel welcomes dogs! Up the road near Auburn is where we found our Labrador retriever mix, Abby. She was being fostered by a woman who already owned six golden’s but had room in her house, and her heart, to take on Abby and her brother, puppies rescued off the streets in Louisiana after Hurricane Katrina. The whole family, humans and dogs alike, can enjoy this town that boasts another stretch of beach and a quaint town center to kick around in.
That Camden Summer by LaVyrle Spencer convinced me I needed to explore the charming coastal town of Camden.  Just below Camden is The Farnsworth Museum in Rockland, offering a fantastic exhibition of paintings by three generations of Wyeths, N.C, Andrew, and James, a must-see for art-lovers and Maine explorers alike.
And my jewel-in-the crown: Acadia National Park. With 47,000 acres of spectacular shoreline, woodlands, lakes, and mountains, including Cadillac Mountain, one of the first places in the U.S. to see the sunrise, is there a more beautiful to location to live out your own story? Or to fall in love?
In my romance Specs Appeal, Liz thinks she wants out of her small community, until the unexpected return of a long-ago classmate who opens her eyes to how much of what she wants is there in her own home town.
Under A Halloween Moon opens at a town Halloween parade where there's magic in the air and Annika is about to cross paths with the single-father of her daughter's best friend.
In Stars In Her Eyes, miles away from the ocean in land-locked Pittsburgh, Karen gets knocked silly in the wave pool--by a wave, and the swimmer who surprisingly comes to her rescue.
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(Photos provided by author and Arcadia site)


  1. I enjoyed learning more about Maine, a state I've never visited. But it's on my Bucket List. Thanks for sharing, Annette, and Beverly. I hope to visit soon. Good luck with your writing, gals.

  2. An interesting state that's on my visit list. Enjoyed learning about more places to see. Best of luck with your writing.

  3. My brother in law is from Maine and he loves it. I can see why. I have been t here just once. It is beautiful
    debby236 at gmail dot com

  4. I HAVE been to Maine! Just for a short visit though and would love to get back again.

    Keep on writing!


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