The Midcoast by Adam White

The Midcoast

Maine. I’ve read more novels that take place in Maine this year than ever before. Most of them have been light summer reads or family sagas. This one is unique. It’s not quite a thriller. Not really a mystery, and certainly not a light summer read. However, it is definitely a character study of a small coastal town in Maine named Damariscotta. The town actually exists and I bet most of you have either been there or have heard of it.

The story begins with the prologue. There’s a party going on here. Big party. The richest family in the town is throwing it. The Thatch family is showing offa their wealth for all to see. But something is wrong here. And before we know it a long line of police cars is coming around the bend, lights atop the cars, turning and twisting for all to see. Trouble. This scene also shows up at the very end of the book. But there’s plenty in between to keep you turning the pages….

Andrew is doing most of the narrating in this book. He and his wife have recently moved back to Damariscotta. He’s teaching English now at the local high school and coaching acrosse. He had moved on years ago, felt he had to “get” away from Maine. Andy worked for the Thatch family as a teen and was bullied by Ed who was close to his own age. Their family business was the Lobster Pound. They were lobstermen.

Early in the book we watch Ed fall for Stephanie. This is not your usual teenage crush. He is totally obsessed with her. He makes a pact early on to give Steph everything she ever wants. So when she becomes pregnant soon after they meet, he marries her and starts down that fateful path to truly make sure she has everything she wants. EVERYTHING.

Ed has no high school diploma. But he has ambition. When push comes to shove Ed steals a valuable diamond ring from a yacht anchored just off shore, knowing the owners are on shore enjoying a leisurely dinner. He has the ring deconstructed and made into an engagement ring for Steph. She has no clue. And that’s just the beginning of his “new” lifestyle.

I love a coastal setting and the area around Damariscotta is breathtaking. Adam White takes clear advantage of the scenery to push his story into your mind. You have a page-turning story, a gorgeous setting and a criminal element that delivers a powerful punch.

I read this book in two sittings. I kept thinking, “the higher they rise, the harder the fall.” Watching the Thatch family rise to lofty heights, I knew it had to be a matter of time before the fall came down hard.

I’m still thinking about the ending. I’m still thinking about the whole story. It was a good ride. But I’m not sure how I feel about the end.

I borrowed this book from the library and am not indebted to anyone for a review! Boom.

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