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Must–Read Books about Nantucket
November 21, 2022
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The island of Nantucket is a popular vacation destination, for many families, mostly due to its rich whaling history, three lighthouses, cobblestone pathways, and iconic holiday spots.

Nantucket’s mystery and atmosphere have inspired many to write books about it. These books help you get familiarized with the island and let you fully immerse yourself in it.

Below is a list of must-read books about Nantucket, arranged according to their respective genre for your reading pleasure.


These are books that help showcase the beauty of Nantucket, perfect for people who want to visit the island or those who want to discover new sites.

28 Summers by Elin Hilderbrand

The author of this book has lived on the island for 28 summers, inspiring the book’s title. It will help you learn all about Nantucket over the last 28 years. It combs through all the restaurants, beaches, shops, and traditions you can enjoy while in Nantucket.

If you are looking to visit the island for the summer, this book is a must-read; it will help you know all the ins and outs of the island for a successful holiday.

Nantucket: Classic American Style 30 Miles Out to Sea by Liza Gershman and Carrie Nieman Culpepper

This book explores the Nantucket nautical style and how its lifestyle, culture, and rugged landscape influence it. There are watercolor illustrations of the different elements that give the island its style.

The photograph book also features environmental shots and portraits of the islanders and visitors.

Nantucket: Seasons on the Island by Cary Hazelgrove

This is yet another book of photographs that showcases the island’s natural beauty and atmosphere. It is a classic coffee table book containing poignant life quotes from the locals.

It also includes photographs of the island throughout the four seasons, showing you what to look forward to all year round.


Ahab’s Wife by Sena Jeter Naslund

This book follows the wife of the captain of Moby Dick and her life while her husband is at sea. It gives you an in-depth look at the women’s lifestyle in the former whaling capital. It is also a good read if you want to know more about the island’s whaling history.

The Movement of Stars by Amy Brill

Loosely based on America’s first female astronomer, Maria Mitchell, this book follows Hannah, a Quaker librarian searching for a comet. It is a good book for those nights out under the stars.

Moby Dick by Herman Melville

This classic book is a must-read if you want to know more about the former whaling capital. The story follows the titular whaleship and its captain’s quest for revenge. It is told from a sailor’s viewpoint as he observes his captain’s obsession. It is a gripping tale from beginning to end.


The Guest Cottage by Nancy Thayer

Grab this bestselling book by a local author that takes you on an emotional ride. The book is centered on a guest cottage and the two single parents who book the same cottage and grow close. Follow their story as they try to figure out whether there might be more to their relationship outside the guest cottage.

Nantucket by Nan Rossiter

Get lost in this heartwarming story about rekindled passion, love, and loss. Better yet, the book is only the first installment of a two-book series, so you can always follow the story.

True Love by Jude Deveraux

Learn more about the Nantucket wedding scene by following this story about weddings, love, and death set on the small island. It is the first of three installments and is worth the read.


Nantucket Nights by Elin Hilderbrand

The bestselling author is back with the story of three women. It follows their amazing friendship and the secrets surrounding them that threaten to ruin everything they hold dear.

Death in the Off-Season by Francine Mathews

It starts with a body lying face down in a bog. You will get lost in the mystery as you delve into what led to these circumstances all the way to a satisfying finale.


Comet’s Nine Lives by Jan Brett

Keep the little ones engaged on those lazy days by reading them this touching tale of Comet as he searches the island for a place to call home. They will be entertained by the troubles he gets into and almost losing all his nine lives in his search.

Thy Friend, Obadiah by Brinton Turkle

This charming story is about a young Quaker boy in a colonial Nantucket named Obadiah. He is constantly accompanied by a seagull that he wishes would stop because of the constant teasing from villagers. However, when the seagull does go away, Obadiah misses him and wants him to come back.


No matter what your taste in books is or whether you are in Nantucket or not, these books will keep you occupied – all day long!

Ensure to get a copy for those lazy days on the beach or the lovely and warm summer nights.