There are boatloads of fishing books, but here is a short list of four at the top of this editor's list for fun and literary reading.
Click the book covers for more reviews and purchase info.
A River Runs Through It
This is an autobiographical novella of the Maclean family told through Norman, on one last trip to the Montana river with his self-destructive but talented fly-fishing brother Paul. The plot runs a lot deeper than the flies, but the fishing part was enough to boost the popularity of fly fishing, especiall after Robert Redford directed the film version, which helped launch Brad Pitt (as Paul) to super-stardom.
Hiaasen is one funny writer with a load of hilarious books and newspaper columns to his credit. This novel doesn't carry the literary heft of the other books on my list, but I promise you this twisted crime story set in a wacky world of professional tournament fishing (apologies in advance for the following) will make you laugh your bass off!
The Old Man and the Sea
Widely considered the last of Papa's great novels, this early 1950s work brings Hemingway back to his life-long love of fishing with the tale of Cuban fisherman Santiago and his epic battle with a marlin (and then sharks). Obviously, it's a lot deeper than a big fish story. It won a Pulitzer Prize and helped the author secure a special place in literary history with the Nobel Prize in Literature.
The River Why
David James Duncan
A fantastic romp through my own fishing backyard in Oregon with Gus Orviston, the prodigal son of a famous fly-fishing writer (catch that last name?) and a (*gasp*) bait-fishing mother. Duncan hasn't been a prolific novelist, but he deftly manages to walk the tippet-thin line between telling an entertaining story and an enlightening one.
What are your picks for best books about fishing? Email them to me.