Durham author and illustrator releases book set on Lake Winnipesaukee

Sunday News Correspondent
January 12. 2018 7:32PM

Author and illustrator Bridget Finnegan's new book has a motley crew of characters based on the birds of Lake Winnipesaukee. (Courtesy)


DURHAM - Family traditions and a love of the big lake's wildlife led local author and illustrator Bridget Finnegan to choose Lake Winnipesaukee as the setting of her newest children's book.

Finnegan's mother grew up in Laconia, and had a camp on Little Bear Island. These days, Finnegan travels to the lake with her boyfriend to spend time with family members.

"I vacation on the lake with my family every summer, and this story has been growing with every year we've spent exploring the lake," Finnegan said. "From ducks and loons to the eagles nesting on Blueberry Island, I knew the fowl had a tale to share."

Finnegan started her work on "Lake: A Loony Winnipesaukee Duck Tale" by taking pictures of birds. Then she developed each character, including Dawdle the common merganser, a loon named Poke, Giblet the turkey, Ducky Shincracker, who leads a bird resistance, and Hildegard, a swan who dreams of world domination.

The story, set during World War II, begins with breaking news that the Grand Duchess from St. Petersburg, Russia, has been robbed. Her companion and pet, Hildegard, is missing.

Canada geese gather up the birds on Ragged Island and charge them with building Hildegard a castle from which the swan will rule. The birds are chained together and prohibited from flying.

Hildegard threatens to unleash the "Milfoil Egg" created by a jeweler to the czar, which would destroy the lake. Finnegan's motley crew of characters are the only ones who can stop her.

Finnegan said the social message is that we are caretakers of each other and our environment. She said bringing her characters to life brought her joy.

"I really liked them as beings," Finnegan said.

Finnegan, the owner of Dawdle Publishing, sells her books on Amazon.com. She is currently working on a 32-page picture book about cats for small children and is looking for an agent to represent her.

Finnegan earned her MBA degree from Plymouth State University last year.

For more information, visit bridgetfinnegan.com.
The characters in "Lake" head out for a vintage speedboat ride. 

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