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Keeper: A Life Amongst Fishes and Those Who Catch Them

Keeper: A Life Amongst Fishes and Those Who Catch Them - Martin Donovan Martin Donovan is an English Riverkeeper, and if you ever wondered what life is like on an English chalkstream (the Test), Keeper is probably worth a read. It's a memoir about a way of life some fly fishermen might find romantic, and fortunately, the author has a knack for writing like you're sitting right across the table talking to him. The writing itself is straightforward (don't expect a lot of literary insight), and while I generally liked the book, it's not without its flaws. The book starts a little slowly (we could have moved through Donovan's childhood a bit faster), and some of the later chapters felt undeveloped and tacked on. And twice the writer descends into a "kids these days are going right to hell" rant, which makes the rest of the narrative feel small and rootbound -- especially if you're not familiar with the recent political arc in England.(And I'd love to photograph the face of any number of American fly fishing guides when they read Donovan's assertion that American fly fishermen are far more likely to accept advice than English anglers.)Keeper is a genuinely nice book that fortunately doesn't aspire to literary greatness, and the reader's appreciation of it is probably largely predicated on their interest in the river often pointed to as the birthplace of fly fishing.