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Blood Knots: Of Fathers, Friendship and Fishing Paperback – 1 Apr 2010
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'A beautifully-crafted story... I was transfixed... completely absorbed by Jenning's stilled, naturalist's eye as he waited by dark canals and chuckling chalk streams for that flash of beauty, while on that other plane, above the water, the ugly chaos of life waited to resume its infernal narrative.' Nicholas Crane
About the Author
Luke Jennings is the author of three novels, including the Booker Prize-longlisted Atlantic. As a journalist he has written for Vanity Fair, The New Yorker and Time, as well as all the British quality papers, and he is currently the dance critic of the Observer. He is married with three children, lives in North London, and fishes whenever he can.
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Jennings characterises fishing as connecting with nature, which makes sense. His descriptions of particular fishing episodes are marvellously evocative. There is too much technical detail on fishing tackle for me (which others may find interesting), but the relaxed style is a pleasure to read.
In some ways, this book was surprisingly (though lightly) nostalgic and concerned with what it means to be English, in a suitably under-stated and non-analytical way - and all the more powerful for that. A curious aspect - again, quite English - is that Jennings seems to be non-religious and yet he regrets the modernising impact which Vatican II had on Catholicism.
On the surface this book is about fishing, but this beautiful work is so much more than this, it is about friendship and family relationships and is a fantastic read. The book evokes a lot of emotions, it made me laugh out loud as well as making me feel wistful and sometimes sad. The author writes in such a beautiful way that even the passages about fishing were engaging, which is impressive as I have never been interested in fishing.
I finished this book in three days, and it was truly a joy to read. One of the other reviewers made reference to the fact this is one of the most endearing books they have read and I thoroughly agree. The joy of reading this book has stayed with me and it is one of those books I can imagine rereading many times in the years to come. I cannot recommend this wonderful book enough, please give it a try I am sure you will not be disappointed.
Instantly engaging and encouraging many memories from my own childhood, this is an absolute delight of a book.
Well written and a great tale, whether or not you have any interest in fishing - such is his style.
At least I have an insight into what those chaps are doing along the bank and much more!
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