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Willie Knows Who Done It

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June 1, 2020

By Hans Krichels
Atmosphere Press, 2020.
Available at BookStacks in Bucksport, Union River Book & Toy Co. in Ellsworth, all Sherman’s locations, Longfellow Books in Portland, and from Amazon and atmospherepress.com
208 pages, paperback, $15.99

Hans Krichels migrated to Maine to homestead in the ‘70s and learned to appreciate the rural, independent way of life here – along with the many characters who lived that life. He sold his woodcarvings at early Common Ground Country Fairs. His book of stories and poems comes from his years of taking notes about these people and places. While not the type of how-to farming or gardening book that we normally review here, “Willie Knows Who Done It” will entertain anyone who has experienced Maine as a native or adopted state. I especially enjoyed the story of a group of back-to-the-landers who tried to buy a rototiller together and share it. Such efforts quickly become complicated! A story about a sweater that traveled from a second-hand store in Maine to the far reaches of the United States, and the people it affected, is delightful. A poem that relates the fate of a flock of turkeys and a herd of deer to that of migrant families at the U.S. border leaves a lasting image of our time. Worth a read!

– Jean English

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