Finchosaurus will entertain and teach important lessons to middle-schoolers

Gail Donovan has a lot better imagination than I do. She’s written several novels for middle-grade students, including one which was named a New York Library Best Books for Children.

Gail’s new book, Finchosaurus, published by IslandPort Press, is very imaginative, a story about a boy, Finch, who is consumed by his interest in dinosaurs. And when he digs up a note in his school’s playground, with the word help on it, he focuses on trying to find out who needs help.

I loved how Gail advanced the story, with Finch helping all the kids in his class, as he searches for the writer of that note. There’s a lot of humor here, and an important message for kids. I suggest that you buy a couple copies, and donate one to your library and one to your school. It’s my hope that every Maine middle-schooler will read and learn from this story.

Gail was born and raised in Connecticut but now lives in Maine with her husband and two daughters. She’s a library assistant at the Portland Public Library.

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.