When two publishers turned James Gilbraith down, he showed them the finger, and published his book himself.
I am thankful that he (through his highly esteemed “Guild of Reason”) did that, because had he not done so, I would have been deprived some snortingly good laughs. These typically happened in public places like coffee shops, where other patrons looked at me sideways.
That would be fitting, since in his book, Gilbraith manages to touch on, and fittingly describe, many of those thoughts that we have, but which we somehow don’t feel we can express publicly. It is no coincidence that this is the trait of many a comedian, and this little gem of a book is a comedy of note!
“Boo” as he is known, cleverly describes a single Salmon season, but does so in a way which gives you plenty of background, and lore, and build up to this point in his fishing life. He and his fishing buddy “Lamont” have an annual award, which is bestowed on whichever one of them manages to catch a Salmon while ducking some or other responsibility. The art of mastering sick days from work is key to their mischief, and these two average guys bring colour to life, by throwing themselves at the quest for Salmon. It is a deeply ingrained addiction that many of us identify with, but in this little book it is described like you have never read before.
Gilbraith is delightfully self deprecating and reckless and crude, as only the British can be. Moreover, he is not some snob, producing a catalogue of theory and advice. He merely has a good chuckle at himself, his mistakes, his blank days on his home water, and his frustrations. There are no high end exotic locations, and there is no name dropping. Almost all of his adventures take place on a good old common, “second rate” water: The river Ribble.
Add to that his outlandish descriptions and expressions, and you have a truly delightful tale. You will read it inside of two days, and be disappointed that it has come to and end so quickly.
Here’s hoping he writes again soon!