Author of Suburban Safari and The Secret Life of Dust, Hannah Holmes, of South Portland, ponders what it means to be human in The Well-Dressed Ape: A Natural History of Myself (Random House, New York, New York; hardcover; 356; $25). The book explores Homo sapiens in depth, providing a plethora of interesting, little-known facts, such as: the brain consumes 20 percent of daily calories and that our so-called personal beliefs are greatly determined by DNA.
Down East Contributing Editor Edgar Allen Beem has a new book. Backyard Maine (Tilbury House, Gardiner, Maine; paperback; 212 pages; $15) features local essays by the Yarmouth resident, most of which have previously appeared in his column, “The Universal Notebook” in the Forecaster, a Greater Portland weekly newspaper. From Americans’ reluctance to truly combat global warming to the fate of his backyard bird tree despised by his wife to the unexpectedly emotional loss of his dog, Beem ruminates on every aspect of life in Maine.
- By: Debra Spark
You don’t need to live in Maine to know that the state is — in at least one corner of the popular imagination — a cure-all: the peace of a summer by the lake or a day at the beach suggests year-round contentment, a life lived honestly and purely, far from Internet connections, failing financial markets, and stressed out opportunists. Katharine Davis’ East Hope (NAL Accent, New York, New York; paperback; 352 pages; $15) charmingly reinforces this conventional — albeit somewhat clichéd — wisdom.
The owners of Cleonice (112 Main St., 207-664-7554, www.cleonice.com) in Ellsworth, Rich and Cary Hanson, are taking local to the next level. They’ve converted several acres of their own property in Bucksport into an organic farm called Artisana. Fresh vegetables, eggs, and pigs are making their way from the farm to the restaurant’s menu. Some of the pork products from the farm that are being used in dishes include homemade coppicola, pancetta, and prosciutto, along with smoked and cured jowls.
Take classes at a Maine lighthouse.
Editorial opinions from across the state.
Maine needs foreign tourists but does little to woo them.
Down East editors discuss Popham Beach, Sebago Salmon, the ladybug invasion, and more.
Where in Maine?
Your February mystery photograph shows gorgeous Sand Beach and little Newport Cove in the southeast corner of Acadia National Park. It is everyone’s dream of the New England coast: a quiet sandy beach looking out over truly blue water, embraced by spruce-covered hills that tumble right down to the shore, all on an intimate scale.
Looking down into the cove, one has the feeling of being its first discoverer. Not quite.
- By: Paul Doiron
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The last thing my over-scheduled life needs is another distraction, and yet somehow my family convinced me to join Facebook. I was immediately “tagged” to participate in the New York Times-noted phenomenon “25 Random Things About Me,” the object of which is to create a list of candid disclosures you’ve had the good sense to keep to yourself. It got me thinking that maybe this magazine should unburden itself of its accumulated trivia. Here are “25 Random Things About Down East”: