Books & Articles

Fly-Fishing the 41st From Connecticut to Mongolia and Home Again: A Fisherman’s Odyssey

Harper Collins (2003)

James Prosek begins Fly-Fishing the 41st with, “One day, I left in a straight line from home at 41 Kachele Street, east along the 41st Parallel, following my passion for fish. It was a journey not only away from home, but toward it; which is the beauty of traveling in a circle, and the irony of adventure.” The journey along 41 degrees North, contains visits to places like: Paris, Spain, Greece, Turkey, Mongolia, and Japan. It is as much about the fish he catches as the people he encounters who share a passion for fish; an eccentric cast of characters illuminated through Prosek’s colorful stories and vivid descriptions.

 

 

“[Fly-fishing is] filled with odd characters, rough places, and the clandestine activities of La Sociedad International de Schwarzfischers, an authority-evading society invented by James Prosek and monomaniac travel companion Johannes Schoffmann. Fresh, engaging, and intensely interesting. A joy to read.”
     — Annie Proux, Author of The Shipping News and That Old Ace in the Hole

“James Prosek has eloquently demonstrated that angling is a kind of universal language, and that doors open to fisherman in disparate cultures that are open to no one else. We are blessed that we have such an original and meticulous observer in James Prosek: He has taken us on an unforgettable journey.”
     — Thomas McGuane, author of Panama, and 92 in the Shade

“Prosek’s gift is an ability to bring the people he meets to life, placing them in landscapes described simply but completely. Prosek introduces us to bureaucrats, lovers, guides, scientists, criminals and sportsmen. Everyone seems to merit attention.

“Fueled by curiosity, artistic temperament, a sense of adventure and alcohol, they poach trout across Europe and Asia. Prosek relates frightening drives through the Balkans, fishing while armored columns pass in Turkey, life in Mongolian yurts and dodging wardens in Sardinia. It is somewhat remarkable that the book wasn’t written from a foreign jail cell as the partners awaited liver transplants.

“[Prosek’s] prose never fails to deliver the reader to the lands that they travel. [His] enthusiasm is captivating. His finely written memoir, a hybrid of sporting and travel genres, is likely to awaken the loucura in armchair travelers and anglers alike.”
     — Minneapolis Star Tribune

“An epic fishing adventure.”
     — Men’s Journal

“The fames fishing writer loops the planet along one of its most interesting latitudinal lines… A hit not only with sport fishermen but with anyone who likes to read a well-written adventure.”
     — BookPage

“[Prosek’s] voice is self-effacing, direct, and occasionally lyrical… His passion for the subject firmly insists on your attention.”
     — Los Angeles Times

“Avid fisherman and evocative writer, Prosek effectively combines the memoir and travelogue forms. [James Prosek] recounts his explorations in passages notable for stunning slices of imagery that linger in the mind; it’s not hard to close your eyes and see these faraway places in all their Old World beauty. Resonant and lyrical.”
     — Kirkus Reviews

“Prosek’s enthusiasm for fish by no means blinds him to the charms and eccentricities of the places he goes.”
     — Booklist