It’s the best time of year to cozy up with a book, and you can really get into the spirit of the season by choosing a story that’s set in winter in Maine. These titles span decades and genres, including murder mystery, animal research, personal commentary, children’s and more. They’re only commonality is that they are all based in our own snowy backyards.


“Storm of the Century”

By Stephen King

This No. 1 New York Times Bestseller was originally a screenplay set on the fictional Little Tall Island. Although these Mainers have seen their fair share of nasty winter weather, they have never seen anything quite as bad as the storm that is about to hit. As the storm begins, Martha Clarendon, one of the island’s oldest residents, is murdered by a man named Andre Linoge. Andre planned to be arrested, so that he could meet Constable Mike Anderson and give the small community with an ultimatum: “If you give me what I want, I’ll go away.”

“Almost, Maine”


By John Cariani 

Based on Cariani’s play of the same name, this collection of bittersweet love stories is set in a small, fictional Maine community that is not officially a town and is almost in Canada. The book follows the relationships among various residents on one particularly cold Friday night.


By Paul Harding

A man lies in his bed, dying, staring at the room he will spend the rest of his life in. That is, until he begins hallucinating. Suddenly, he is transported into the depths of his memory, reliving his life and reuniting with those he had lost. The story begins to explore all of the bittersweet aspects of life: love, loss, pain and regret, through the perspective of a man raised in Maine.

“A Cottage in Maine: When Winter Came” 


By Christine Brendle

Brendle’s story portrays a character named Karen, a woman from Boston who moved into a secluded Maine cottage to write a crime novel. However, as Karen’s writing progresses and the cold Maine winter begins, she begins to lose control of her story and herself. The characters begin to haunt her, causing insanities similar to Poe’s “Tell-Tale Heart.”

“The Winter House: A Season of Sharing”

By Joan MacCracken 

This book focuses on the life of four single women in their 70s. Lonely, and tentative about the physical and emotional effects of being alone during the upcoming winter, the women all move into a large Maine home together. MacCracken’s story illustrates the transformational power of companionship in the later stages of life.

“Julius Winsome”


By Gerard Donovan 

Initially, readers wouldn’t be able to tell that Julius Winsome, the main character in Donovan’s story, has a dark side, but after many difficult years, he has a lot of repressed anger. Julius is finally ready to retire to the cabin in Maine that his father built, taking his beloved dog with him. However, when hunters carelessly shoot his dog, Julius can no longer control himself. Suddenly, his retirement turns into a hunt for revenge and murder.

“The Student Body: The Winter Carnival at this Maine College had it all – Hockey Games, Ice Sculptures, And a Corpse”

By J. S. Borthwick

When Sarah Deane, an English teaching fellow at Bowmouth College, arrived at the school, she assumed that it would be a typical year. However, once multiple students mysteriously die on campus, she becomes determined to uncover what, or who, is causing their deaths.

“You Must Remember This”


By Kat Rosenfield

When Delphine’s grandma falls through thin ice and dies on Christmas Eve, her entire family is brought together to mourn. The family, a peculiar set of characters, learns that Delphine has inherited everything from her grandmother. As tension grows among the characters, Delphine starts to question her grandmother’s mysterious death as well as some aspects of her own life.


“Maine Metaphor: Maine in Winter”

By S. Dorman

This creative nonfiction book is a reflection of S. Dorman’s last 30 years living in Maine. The readers are taken through a collection of thoughts and stories pulled from her personal journals.



By Cathie Pelletier

This national bestseller recounts the snowstorm that hit New England in 1952. This book discusses many of the tragedies that took place during the storm, as well as some of the people who sacrificed their safety to assist others.

“Ravens in the Winter”

By Bernd Heinrich

Heinrich, a sociobiologist, spent four winters in the Maine woods studying how ravens, a fairly solitary bird, socialize during the cold season. In this book, Heinrich makes numerous discoveries about how ravens share food and communicate.


“Winter: Notes and Numina from the Maine Woods”

By Dana Wilde

Wilde’s collection of poetic essays work together to illustrate the process of Maine’s yearly freeze and thaw.


“Christmas in Maine”

By Robert Tristram Coffin, art by Blue Butterfield


Drawing from his time spent on a Maine saltwater farm, Coffin’s writing depicts his vision of what it means to celebrate Christmas in Maine. This read-along story is perfect for an evening by the fire with family, as it radiates a sense of wholesome nostalgia.

“Home for Christmas (A Yorktide, Maine Novel)”

By Holly Chamberlin

Chamberlin writes about Nell King, a single mother who abruptly moved to Maine after her husband left her for another woman. Now, Nell worries that as her daughters get older, their family Christmas will quickly come to an end. Facing the thought of being a single, empty-nester, Nell becomes anxious considering her new independence. She gets the opportunity to rekindle a relationship with her first love, revisiting the choice she made to marry her ex-husband in the name of stability all those years ago.

“No Ordinary Christmas”

By Belle Calhoune


Taking place in the fictional town of Mistletoe, this romance novel follows two unlikely love interests. Dante West, a native to the small town who became a Hollywood actor and Lucy Marshall, the town’s librarian, were best friends and lovers before Dante left for fame without saying goodbye. Now, Dante is back for Christmas and trying to win Lucy’s attention. The novel questions whether two people who are seemingly so different could ever make a relationship work.


“Twas the Night Before Christmas in Maine”

By Jo Parry 

Follow Santa’s journey delivering presents across Maine on Christmas night. Children can read about him visiting numerous towns and landmarks such as Augusta, Portland, Lewiston, Fort William Henry, Penobscot Narrows Bridge and more.

“My Twelve Maine Christmas Days”

By Wendy K. Ulmer, art by Sandy Crabtree

This book is a Maine take on the classic “Twelve Days of Christmas” song. Using her experience as a music teacher, Ulmer replaces birds and rings with blue lobsters and sand dollars, keeping the song’s original rhythm but adding a new, lyrical twist.

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