Author Barbara Kent Lawrence


Islands of Time and its sequel The Other Island: Ben’s Story are Barbara Kent Lawrence’s seventh and eighth books and first two works of fiction. She has also written Bitter Ice: A Memoir of Love, Food, and Obsession; The Hungry i: A Workbook for Partners of Men with Eating Disorders; The Hermit Crab Solution; Dollars & Sense 1: The Cost Effectiveness of Small Schools; Dollars & Sense 2: Lessons from Cost-Effective Small Schools, and many articles about education.

Lawrence earned a BA in anthropology from Bennington College, an MA in sociology from New York University, and an EdD from Boston University. She taught anthropology and history in a high school, then cofounded and ran a real- estate and construction firm in Northeast Harbor, Maine. After receiving her EdD, she served as a policy analyst for the Rural School and Community Trust and later at KnowledgeWorks Foundation, while teaching writing and education courses at Northeastern and Lesley universities in Boston.

Her dissertation, Working Memory: The Influence of Culture on Aspirations, a case study of schools on Mount Desert Island, won the National Rural Education Association award for the dissertation of the year in 1998, and later became the foundation for her novels. While a dissertation seems an unlikely underpinning for a love story between a summer girl and a year-round island boy, both Islands of Time and Ben’s Story reflect the tensions
inherent in the coastal Maine culture that Lawrence studied as a summer kid, as a year-round resident in Downeast Maine, and then in formal research. She now lives in Camden.


  • Islands of Time
  • The Other Island: Ben’s Story
  • Bitter Ice: A memoir of love, food, and obsession
  • The Hungry i: A workbook for partners of men with eating disorders


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