Picks and Pans Review: The Rockbound Coast: Travels in Maine

updated 07/11/1994 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 07/11/1994 AT 01:00 AM EDT

by Christopher Little

Christopher Little is an engaging traveling companion—amiable, curious about all things, chatty without being garrulous—which is one of the strengths of this account of a summer he spent sailing the Maine coast in a borrowed 40-foot sloop with his wife, Betsy, and 9-year-old daughter, Eliza. Little, however, a frequent contributor to PEOPLE, is first and foremost a fine photographer with both a keen eye and an affectionate appreciation of place.

Traveling from Down East lo down south, Little, who has crewed with William F. Buckley Jr. and collaborated on his sailing books, touches on countless points of arcana, from the decline of the sardine industry to the return of the puffin to the varied career of Ferdinand Waldo Demara, known as the Great Impostor, who once taught at North Haven High School.

Little's writing is unaffected; his pictures are often superb, suggesting the uncanny purity of light that has attracted so many artists who have made Maine their home or their subject—Winslow Homer, Edward Hopper, Andrew Wyeth, even Fitz Hugh Lane, painter of translucent 19th-century harborscapes. (Norton, $39.95)

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