Travels through the Heart and Soul of New England: Stories of Struggle, Resilience, and Triumph

New England Notebook cover

A book about understanding New Englanders through the lens of our stories.

Journalist and author Ted Reinstein has reported all around New England for 25 years, telling the colorful stories of this historic yet ever-changing corner of America. Now, he condenses his countless travels into a single, unique labor of love: a journey through the heart and soul of New England, meeting the most memorable people—and their unlikely stories—all along the way. People whose struggles, toughness, triumphs, and humor not only define the very essence of New England, but represent the timeless best of America as well.

In all six states, in their own words, the stories unfold. From a stalwart surfer on New Hampshire’s tiny seacoast, to Maine’s “Slim” Andrews and his one-man museum, to the Vermonter who builds extraordinary havens in the trees for those without hope of reaching them. Meet a couple in the Berkshire Hills determined to save a place they were told doesn’t exist, and a cartoonist in Rhode Island who found an ingenious way for an entire city to say goodnight to those who need to hear it most.

It’s a legendary part of America that’s often caricatured, but rarely caught with such real-life candor and intimacy. Indeed, the Old Mainer in the tired-old joke was wrong: you can get there from here. And along the way, see New England in a whole new light, through the stories of some everyday Americans you’ll never forget.

Praise for Travels Through the Heart and Soul of New England

“New Englanders have a reputation for being cool, reserved, taciturn. Not around Ted. Their stories are quirky, surprising, and profoundly moving.

This is a big-hearted book from a big-hearted writer.”

– REBECCA RULE, author of The Best Revenge and Could Have Been Worse