BLOOD KNOTS: A MEMOIR OF FATHERS, FRIENDSHIP, AND FISHING
Author: Luke Jennings
Publisher: SKYHORSE, Apr 2012
A brilliant & dramatic memoir of an angler?s life. As a child in the 1960s, he was fascinated by the rivers & lakes around his home. It would lead to bright streams & wild country, but would end with his mentor?s capture, torture, & execution by the IRA. Blood Knots is about angling, about great fish caught & lost, but it is also about friendship, honor, & coming of age. 5x8 inches, 240 pgs.
Beneath their surfaces waited alien and mysterious worlds. With library books as his guide, he applied himself to the task of learning to fish. His progress was slow, and for years, he caught nothing. But then a series of teachers presented themselves, including an inspirational young intelligence officer, from whom he learned stealth, deception, and the art of dry-fly fishing. So began an enlightening but often dark-shadowed journey of discovery.
It would lead to bright streams and wild country, but would end with his mentor?s capture, torture, and execution by the IRA. Blood Knots is about angling, about great fish caught and lost, but it is also about friendship, honor, and coming of age. As an adult, Jennings has sought out lost and secretive waterways, probing waters at dead of night in search of giant pike. The quest, as always, is for more than the living quarry. For only by searching far beneath the surface, he suggests in this most moving and thought-provoking of memoirs, can you connect with your own deep history. Jennings offers here a striking, elegiac narrative for lovers of unique memoirs and the finest fly-fishing literature.
From the arresting title?Blood Knots?to the final word, Luke Jennings commands our awe and admiration with this unusually fine, wholly engaging memoir of that life affirming trinity?fathers, friendship, and fishing. - (Tom Brokaw )
Luke Jennings' Blood Knots is a wondrous book. As a lifetime obsessive reader of angling literature I know whereof I speak. As an occasional writer of it I am humbled indeed. In modern times Jennings is in the stratosphere of Roderick Haig-Brown and Tom McGuane's rarified The Longest Silence. The prose is graceful and the treatment of material utterly fresh. I couldn't recommend it more highly. - (Jim Harrison )
Luke Jennings has brilliantly described the full range of English angling, from drifting dry flies on the chalk streams of Sussex to chasing giant pike in the dark industrial waters of London. But this distinctive memoir is far more than a fishing book. In acuteness of observation and literary craft, this is autobiographical writing of the very highest order and a joy to read. - (Howell Raines )
This is literature with that rare combination of the poetic and visceral. I can smell the air, the water. Beautiful. Some true set-the-book-down, gaze-out-your-window...ponder-that-last-beautiful-paragraph-you-just-read moments - (Michael Keaton, actor )
Blood Knots is one of those small but enthralling surprises that lands every now and then on a writer's desk. Like all great fishing books, it can be embraced with unabashed delight by readers who wouldn't know a trout from a truffle. . . . Special and magnetic. - (Carl Hiassen, author of Tourist Season)
Luke Jennings' Blood Knots is simply the best book with fishing in it since Norman MacLean's A River Runs Through It. It's that good! - (Stephen J. Bodio, author of Eagle Dreams)
Blood Knots is one those books so surprising in its depth, its effect, its power as to leave a reader with a sense of an inability to convey just how intense and wonderful it is. But make no mistake. This is a book written from the heart, that acknowledges the mysteries in fishing, which, as the author so gracefully manages to suggest, is a stand in and an expression for many other of the most powerful parts of being human. And, on top of everything else, it is so keenly written as to make the beauty of the English language seem new - (Craig Nova)
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Luke Jennings is the author of three novels, including the Booker Prize?longlisted Atlantic. His work has appeared in Vanity Fair, the New Yorker, and Time. He is currently the dance critic for the Observer and lives in London.