“All Fishermen Are Liars” by John Gierach (Simon & Schuster, 211 pages, in stores)
If you want to learn how to fly fish, reading a book by John Gierach is not what you are looking for. If you want to fall in love with fly fishing, then Gierach is your man.
Writing in his usual homespun style, Gierach’s new book, “All Fishermen Are Liars,” is his 17th since 1984 and another worthy collection for anyone’s bookcase, especially someone who fancies himself a fly fisherman.
Gierach writes with such intimacy about the sport — or lifestyle I should say — that even if your life is not consumed by fishing, you find yourself entranced by his words.
“I can’t help but think of trout streams as feminine, but that’s not some kind of left-handed gender politics,” Gierach writes in one of the book’s essays, titled “New Water.”
“It’s just that this kind of graceful and surprising sweetness calls to mind many of the women I know, but none of the men. Of course, strictly speaking, a trout stream is an inanimate object, but no fisherman really believes that.”
“All Fishermen Are Liars” contains 22 essays from some of Gierach’s fishing adventures across North America. He takes you along on his journeys to busy streams and secluded lakes in snow-capped mountains in pursuit of his quarry, whether it is steelheads, salmon or smallies.
The streamside philosopher also has an ear for anecdote and often finds musings in the characters he meets and the places he eats on his travels.
From the book’s essay, “The Nuclear Option,” on his quest to find the perfect steelhead fly: