Another great novel from Barbara Lawrence

Now, we get the rest of the story. Ben’s story.

I loved Barbara Kent Lawrence’s novel, Islands of Time, and immediately after finishing it, I picked up the sequel, The Other Island: Ben’s Story. Both books were published by the Maine Author’s Alliance.

In Islands of Time, Becky Granger tells her story of love, loss, and a lifetime of incredible sorrow. Her family members are “summer people” on a Maine island when she falls in love, at the age of 14, with Ben Bunker, an island boy. Everything goes wrong, and Becky mourns that lost love for the rest of her life, through two unsuccessful marriages. And then she moves permanently to that island, and reconnects with Ben, although he is very happily married.

There’s a lot more to the story, of course, but I don’t want to spoil it for you. For sure, you should read Islands of Time before you tackle Ben’s Story.

After reading Becky’s story, Ben’s story will be familiar, but very different from Becky’s. I particularly liked the details about the fishing industry in this novel. Ben is a fisherman and a marine biologist, and we learn a lot about the challenges facing our commercial fishermen in this book.

But it’s that love story, Becky’s story and Ben’s story, that makes this so compelling. My friend, and another great novelist, Paul Doiron, captured it well when he wrote that Ben’s Story is “a moving and beautifully written novel of Maine coastal fishing communities.” I agree Paul!

I would add compelling, honest and true, and so very real, to that description.

You can learn more about these novels, and Lawrence’s other books, at

George Smith

About George Smith

George stepped down at the end of 2010 after 18 years as the executive director of the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine to write full time. He writes a weekly editorial page column in the Kennebec Journal and Waterville Morning Sentinel, a weekly travel column in those same newspapers (with his wife Linda), monthly columns in The Maine Sportsman magazine, two outdoor news blogs (one on his website,, and one on the website of the Bangor Daily News), and special columns for many publications and newsletters. Islandport Press published a book of George's favorite columns, "A Life Lived Outdoors" in 2014. In 2014, George also won a Maine Press Association award for writing the state's bet sports blog. In 2016, Down East Books published George's book, Maine Sporting Camps, and Islandport Press published George and his wife Linda's travel book, Take It From ME, about their favorite Maine inns and restaurants.