a passion for tarpon,    fly fishing for tarpon,    Review

"A Passion For Tarpon" Coffee Table Book Impresses (It's Big, It's Complete, And It's $100...)

Posted by Tom Chandler 1/24/2011

Fly fishing's full of coffee table books, but if you added legs to Andy Mill's "A Passion For Tarpon" book, you'd have a coffee table unto itself.

A massive volume of 510 pages - jammed with a mix of essays, interviews (of greats like Stu Apte) and a fair amount of Andy Mill's "how-to" - A Passion for Tarpon is clearly meant to be the definitive volume on fly fishing for tarpon.

And it largely succeeds.

Andy Mills has dedicated a lot of time and money to the pursuit of tarpon, and while I'm unqualified to suggest he's the best tarpon fly fishermen extant, I will say he's certainly the best to publish a 500 page book.

A Passion For Tarpon

A Passion for Tarpon crosses a few genres; it's a pretty coffee-table book filled with nice photographs, but it also offers a handful of very interesting interviews with heavy-hitting tarpon anglers, and yes - it's also jammed with "how-to" and scientific information about tarpon.

It even includes episode one of Jamie Howard's acclaimed "Chasing Silver" series on DVD.

A Passion For Tarpon

I'm not a tarpon angler and I'd be lieing if I said I read every word of this book, but I have read most of it and know that - if it were about small streams - I'd buy it despite the sizable price tag.

It's clearly written and the interviews are - to a small stream guy - more interesting than the articles, but overall, the book holds together beautifully.

I'm Impressed, But...

I'm just going to say it; the typeface the text is set in isn't really suitable for a book-length project. In fact, it's a little startling to see amateur typography appear in a book of this caliber.

That tyographically geekish nitpick aside, A Passion For Tarpon probably will find its way onto every tarpon angler's bookshelf.

The information, interviews, photographs and other goodies will probably be too much to ignore.

See you at the bookshelf, Tom Chandler.

A Passion for Tarpon cover

AuthorPicture

Tom Chandler

As the author of the decade leading fly fishing blog Trout Underground, Tom believes that fishing is not about measuring the experience but instead of about having fun. As a staunch environmentalist, he brings to the Yobi Community thought leadership on environmental and access issues facing us today.

Wow, I doubt the front of the book matters at all to the quality of the content. But what do I know, im straight.
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That's lame. I'm not a "font geek" but can't stand it when books are allowed to go to press with migraine-inducing type face. Since I work for a fly shop I will simply wait for it. My all time favorite fishy "coffee-table" book is Bonefishing! by Kaufmann. Andy Mill has the damned Life of Riley.
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Too much thick/thin contrast, and as my fave art director would have said, the type "was swimming" on the page: It's like an uncondensed, oddly ill-proportioned Garamond - some of the thicker bits actually feel lumpy. It's readable - and the design of the book is nice - but you definitely notice it, and not in a good way.
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"Most of the text of this book was set in Backslap Grotesque Italic Semi-Detached, a variant of Bangalore Torpedo Moribund adapted in 1867 from a matrice by the Danish chiseler Espy Sans, a character if ever there was one." opening sentence from Bruce McCall's , 1997 , "A Note on the Type"
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Me, too, another typeface geek here. What's the deal?
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I'm a font snob but haven't seen the book. Tell me the publisher's design department didn't use Comic Sans...
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Ok, I'll bite. Purely for my own (non-publishing background) education, what's the typeface and what would have worked better?
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