January 09, 2005
Bud Stewart---Michigan's Legendary Lure Maker, by Frank Baron and Raymond
L. Carver. A gorgeous photobook of the wildest fishing lures ever. Wonderful
painting and psychedelic renditions of what are still very naturalistic
baits. Love that catfish! Handpainted baits mass-produced well past the
era when factories did it all. Famous Bud insisted that by hand was the
way to do it, or your money back, up to the 1980's. He fished what he preached.
An oldtimer with big vision; reminds me of Rockwell Kent. Walks the fine
line between over the top and dead on the money. Either you or your favorite
bass will want to walk away with any Bud Stewart lure you're lucky enough
Bayou Bill's Best Stories--Most of them true, by Bill Scifres. Outdoor
stories with heart and soul, set in a regular sort of place, without too
much money. Superb 'growing up on a trapline' story to warm you where it
The River Why, by David James Duncan. Best fishing book. There. Actually,
it's a coming of age story from the hundred unique perspectives of one family
and teen, which make it perhaps a lot more like our own lives than most
other 'artsy' fishing books. Truth is stranger than fiction after all. This
story is built around trout fishing, high school, fly tying...and the hopeless
hope of meeting a girl who's also fishing just around that next bend. Plus
a brother and some friends and relatives who are crazier than hoot-owls,
which also somehow make them more like our own.
Double Whammy, by Carl Hiaasen. The only novel about pro bass fishing.
And then some. ---TV preachers, cheats, condo developers and renegade heroes.
Wild dark comedy and dead-eye details and insights into modern consumerism
and environmentalism. Later Hiaasen deteriorates into trite formula so be
careful. Hallmark book of what is called 'Florida Writing'---a caustic style
about the pitfalls of confidence, consumerism, development, authority, and
toadyism, often set in Florida, but not necessarily...also perilously close
to being 'outside', unpublishable, since it's almost too honest and un-PC,
almost anti-modern...the emporer has no clothes and no one is spared judgement...also
usually camoflaged in another genre, usually Literature camoflaged as Mystery/Crime...also
the writers don't come from academia; they're often switch-hitters from
gritty or cynical professions. Got that? Top Florida writers include King
Jack Saunders (almost unpublished, but on my website), John D. MacDonald,
Elmore Leonard, Charles Willeford, C. Bukowski, James Lee Burke.
Related Articles & Good Stuff
Views From a Wider Range of OYB