By Mark D. Williams
1,001 of the World's Greatest Backcountry Honeyholes, Trout Rivers, Blue Ribbon Waters, Bass Lakes, and Saltwater Hot Spots
When I was a very small child, I used to look at a Christmas present and rate it on the size of the wrapped box. The bigger, the better! Things haven't changed much; nowadays, I'll look at a book and generally have a good stab at the price just by the size of it.
I couldn't have been much further off the mark with So Many Fish, So Little Time. This book is ENORMOUS, yet despite being a whopping 860 pages long (including the index), it has a recommended retail price of just £11.99. Incredible!
So Many Fish, So Little Time is a compilation of some of the world's best angling locations, compiled by Mark D. Williams. I was quite relieved, therefore, that it wasn't the sort of book that I had to read cover to cover in order to type a few words about it. It's taken me long enough to get this far, but if I'd been expected to analyse every page, I'd be at it for another year or more!
It would be easy to dislike Mark – the lucky so and so gets to fish all over the world. Living in America, he is surrounded by great fishing. His passion is fly-fishing, a subject on which he has written a number of books before, and the main crux of the book is fly-fishing around the world. Other types of angling aren't totally ignored, but you'd be upset if you'd bought this book expecting to find all the best carp fishing venues in the world, for example. It's definitely a fly-fishing travel guide with other types of angling thrown in. Like most anglers, Mark will fish for what's available. For example, there can't be many who'd go to Hawaii and not try some big game fishing.
The book itself is firstly divided into the states of America, which takes us all the way up to page 572 out of the 860. If you were planning an adventurous fly fishing trip to the USA, this would be your bible! In fact, it covers pretty much all of the available fishing in the states, including the sort that most of us in the UK would think of when thinking of America – Bass fishing!
We're then introduced to fishing in many countries around the world, in all the major continents. In fact, it's probably every continent, but my geography knowledge is terrible!
The amount of detail given for each location depends on the author's personal knowledge of that particular place and, whilst the majority are well detailed, some are a bit patchier. For example, England is summed up in just two and a half pages. Many sections also contain personal anecdotal accounts of visits, which just go to show how much fishing around the world Mark has really done.
At the end of each location section, you'll find contact details for guides and various companies, as well as relevant website addresses in many cases. This is a particularly useful feature.
In summary, I'd say that So Many Fish, So Little Time would be a great book for anyone visiting the USA with the intention of going fishing. If you're planning to go fishing elsewhere in the world, especially fly-fishing, then it is certainly a good starting point. A book that had all the details on all the fishing locations around the world would be an impossibility, and I don't think that Mark is professing to have created such a book. What he has done, however, is to create a book that would whet the appetite of any angler and, if that angler just happened to share the adventurous gene that Mark obviously has, it could lead on to a whole new world of fishing journeys. It certainly contains enough information that, to fish all the places Mark mentions, would mean a life full of fishing and a very happy angler!
So Many Fish, So Little Time has an RRP of £11.99. Click here to check the latest price on Amazon.co.uk