Lifelines. An Anthology of Angling Anecdotes, and More…

£10.95 Available direct from the website of the publishers Arthur H Stockwell Ltd, Ilfracombe.

What’s not to like about this book? It has been conceived and brought to fruition by Rod Sturdy and Nathan Walter, and all proceeds are going to the Royal Marsden cancer hospital and to Lisa Wilson’s initiative to take those people fishing who otherwise would not have access to the water. Her father John will be watching and be proud, I know.

Having got the bones established, what about the flesh? The book really is a delight, a collection of truly great tales by some of the luminaries of our time. I’m thinking Chris Yates, Charles Rangeley-Wilson, Hugh Miles, Dave Steuart, and our dear old chum Paul Whitehouse. I hasten to add that these are five amongst very many angling writers of note who have given their words for the cause.

The book is carefully produced without the endless typos that characterise most works of this sort, and it looks lovely as well. Iconic artists like David Miller have joined in to donate their paintings and there are endless spreads that will give pleasure, even without reading the words on them.

The book, and concept, strike me as being deliciously old-fashioned and of course, being all the better for that. Electronic/digital wizardry is fine, but what beats a solid, entertaining read about your favourite sport? Especially at Christmas, in front of a fire perhaps? You only need the carol singers outside to complete the picture!

So go on, please! Take the trouble to order a book for your fishing pal or for yourself. Nathan and Rod have done wonders here, and worked their socks off to produce something really worthwhile for two charities that, also, are really worthwhile. As I said, what is not to like about this generous, important and hugely enjoyable piece of work? Show that we care… and have hours of pleasure in doing so!

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