I absolutely love reading, which makes it all the more unfortunate I never get the chance to do any! I work sixty hours or more most weeks on the website, lakes and my writing work, so there’s very little time left for indulgences. However, with a few things going on at home right now, I’ve been reminded of the importance of ‘taking a bit of time out for yourself’ and, therefore, when I received a timely request to review Ted lamb’s latest publication, BRASSRIBS, I was determined to leave work to one side for a moment and make some time in order that I could sit back and enjoy it!
I’m so glad I did, not only because the book was a thoroughly enjoyable read, but because it’s always nice to just kick back from time to time and completely immerse yourself in a good read – it’s good for the soul. I like reading all kinds of fishing books, be they fiction or non-fiction, but must admit I have a passion for the old-school, and thus this latest offering could not be any further up my street!
The backdrop to the book is the tranquil Brightwell Estate, which like any good country Estate comes complete with a lake its mysterious inhabitants. The story follows the paths of different characters who all have very different relationships with the lake, spread over generations, who ultimately, all come together when the Estate comes under threat from development. In Ted’s own words, the tale to save all this involves bravery, romance, excitement…and an unexpected intervention from the past, and I would not want to give any more away with a spoiler alert!
What I will say, as a passionate angler privileged enough to spend over ten years chasing original Leney carp stocked into the Capesthorne Hall Estate, is that it encapsulates many of my fondest memories of that time – it was never just about the fishing; it was about being in a very special place steeped in history, which only a handful of people were lucky enough to bear witness to. I was always just as intrigued to learn as much about the history of the Estate and its surroundings as I was about the fish in the lake. I was always captivated when those involved in the running of the Estate took time to recount tales of its past, and this book, for me, could have been set right there on the Capesthorne Estate itself, which only added to its appeal.
What was a first for me was to read parts of the story from the perspective of one of the lake’s mysterious inhabitants, which only served to add another layer of depth in which to immerse myself. The book pays a respectful nod to the past; both in angling terms and day-to-day life, and offers a delightful insight into old-school methods and techniques, and I for one found myself totally engrossed from start to finish.
I’m all for evolution, but every now and then it’s nice to take a nostalgic step back, and that’s exactly what I did when reading this delightful tale, and I look forward to the next instalment with bated breath.
If you’re in need of a bit of rest and relaxation, then this is the perfect prescription.