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Shoutin' into the Fog

Shoutin' Into the Fog: Growing up on Maine's Ragged Edge is a gritty Depression-era memoir of life in Midcoast Maine. Author Thomas Hanna grew up in the village of Five Islands on Georgetown Island, in a small, crowded bungalow pieced together on the edge of a swamp with secondhand wood and cardboard. He was the eldest son and the second of eight children born to his young mother and his father, a World War I veteran big on dreams, but low on luck.


During Hanna's early years, there were some bright moments despite the privation, but as the years wore on, times were often unbearable. He wrote of eating only rice and raisins for days on end, the embarrassment of "being on the town," his growing resentment toward a father he desperately wanted to be close to, and, ultimately, his bitterness at becoming the man of the family at the tender age of 14. But, it is also a tale of growing up, of collecting Hoodsie cup lids, moonlit toboggan rides, and life in a small village. It was only after serving in the U.S. Navy during the end of World War II, far from the poverty and despair of his childhood, that Hanna found personal salvation.

Drawing on insight gleaned from his 80 years, Hanna's Shoutin' into the Fog is a book written with sensitivity, humor, and subtle emotion about a hardscrabble way of life, old-time Maine, and the meaning of both family and forgiveness. His personal tale casts an honest light not only on his own family, but helps illuminate a way of life common to the coast in the 1920s and 1930s that is slowly fading from memory.

Shoutin' into the Fog