Though he made his name and his fortune as an author of Western novels, Zane Grey's best writing has to do with fishing. There he was free from the conventions of the Western genre and the expectations of the market, and he was able to blend his talent for narrative with his keen eye for detail and humor, much of it self-deprecating, into books and articles that are both informative and exciting.
His first published fishing article appeared in 1902, and he continued to write books and articles on angling until his death in 1939. From the trout streams and bass rivers of the East to the steelhead rivers of the Northwest; from the offshore angling of Nova Scotia and California to the unexplored waters of New Zealand and the South Sea islands, Grey was constantly in motion, sometimes fishing three hundred days a year, always writing to support his passion. At one time or another he held more than a dozen saltwater records, yet he always returned from the big game to the freshwater streams he had learned to love as a boy.
This book is a selection of some of Grey's best work, and the stories and excerpts reveal a man who understood that angling is more than an activity-it is a way of seeing, a way of being more fully a part of the natural world. No writer exceeds Zane Grey's ability to integrate the fishing experience with a world he saw so vividly.
Terry Mort has degrees in literature from Princeton University and the University of Michigan. His short stories and articles have appeared in a number of national periodicals, and his historical novels were published in 2004. He is also the author of The Reasonable Art of Fly Fishing and the editor of Jack London on Adventure. He lives in Sonoita, Arizona.