Looking for a way to pass the time until you can get out on the water again? Want to get inspired ahead of your next visit to Sointula Lodge? Or perhaps need a good read to bring along on your trip for a nice afternoon read on the dock? We’ve compiled a list of the top books every angler will love. Keep reading to find a few titles to add to your list.
1. 52 Rivers: A Woman’s Fly Fishing Journey, by Shelley Walchake
Fishing is a sport that’s long been enjoyed by both men and women alike. And while men have tended to outnumber women, that’s a trend that’s rapidly changing. For author Shelley Walchak, fishing, and more specifically fly fishing, was something that she discovered later in life. What started as an interest turned into a passion, and she left her job at a university library to fly fish a different river each week for an entire year.
Shelley purchased a camper, some camera equipment, a computer, and her gear, and took to the road to complete her mission. She took photos and blogged along the way, and eventually turned the material into this book.
52 Rivers: A Woman’s Fly Fishing Journey is an inspirational read for anyone eager to follow their dreams and pursue something that they love, regardless of their age or gender.
2. The Longest Silence, by Thomas McGuane
If you’re someone who enjoys a lightweight read while you’re on vacation or only have time for a little reading each day, you’ll enjoy the short-story format of Thomas McGuane’s The Longest Silence.
McGuane’s popular book is a collection of forty short stories, all of which center around fishing. From fight monster tarpon off the coast of Florida to reeling in salmon in the chilly waters of Iceland, this collection has it all. You’ll meet a wide range of interesting and unique characters, like a devout Mormon river guide and a brave, illiterate Candian frontiersman.
3. The River Why, by David James Duncan
Fishing is an exciting, challenging sport. But for many, it’s also a spiritual experience. A day on the water means plenty of quiet contemplation, and, hopefully, a heart-pounding fight to reel in a big catch.
The River Why is a tale of the spiritual nature of fishing, woven alongside the story of the narrator’s, Gus Orviston, family. Gus’s family is fishing obsessed, and a little off-kilter. He leaves them behind to retreat to a remote cabin located along a river where he plans to pursue his passion for fly fishing. Instead, Gus becomes more and more troubled by the state of the natural world around him, and the state of his own life. At times funny, sad, and inspiring, the novel is a captivating read.
David James Duncan’s book has been a favorite for more than 35 years and continues to captivate and entertain both anglers and book lovers alike.
4. Goodbye to a River, by John Graves
Another book that’s grounded in themes of conservation is Goodbye to a River. Written by John Geaves, it’s a story about the author’s personal journey to stop a series of dams from being built along the Brazos River in Texas in the 1950s.
While you won’t find fishing tips between the pages, if you’re passionate about preserving the natural world around us, and particularly our water sources, you’ll find John’s tale of perseverance and of braving the harsh elements in an attempt to save a river he so loved, inspiring.
5. The Old Man and The Sea, by Ernest Hemingway
This popular classic tale by the legendary author Ernest Hemingway often finds its way on the list of top picks for every reader. But anglers in particular will connect with the epic tale of man versus fish.
The story follows Santiago, a weathered Cuban fisherman who has spent 84 days on the water without a catch. Leaving behind quieter waters to try his luck in the Gulf Stream, Santiago finally hooks a giant marlin. For the next three days, he fights to reel in the fish, putting his deep knowledge and vast experience to the test. While he is successful, after lashing the massive fish to the side of his boat, sharks eat away at his catch, leaving behind only a very impressive skeleton.
It’s no surprise that Hemingway captured the intricate details of battling it out on the line with a monster catch; the author was a talented, experienced fisherman himself. This book was the last he would ever write and was awarded a Pulitzer Prize for fiction a year after its publication in 1952.
Picking Your Next Fishing-Centric Read
From a collection of stories to real-life tales of the spiritual nature of casting a line, each of these titles can be a source of inspiration for experienced anglers and newcomers alike.
If your latest read has you inspired to start planning your next fishing trip, we can help. Book your 2021 excursion today and secure your spot for the adventure of a lifetime!