Andromeda/Your Turn: Summer Salmon Reading

Sitting in the orthodontist’s chair talking books this morning (I’m lucky that my orth is a big reader), and talk turned to Mark Kurlansky, author of Cod, a little book that ended up having significant staying power and influencing an entire generation of quirky, narrow-subject books.

Back home today, on a summer afternoon that is proudly announcing that fishing and gardening and grilling are all right around the corner, I browse my bookshelves for other natural history classics and favorites, about everything from tidepools to butterflies. And it occurs to me: Do we really not have a single well-read work of creative nonfiction about Alaska salmon? We do have Nancy Lord’s Fish Camp, which encompasses the life of the salmon fisher. We have the more recently published Salmon in the Trees, in a photo book format with essays (I haven’t read it but I plan to!), and many general works of natural history, as well as great salmon cookbooks, and wonderful examples of fishy art and popular science writing by the wonderful Ray Troll. And in the Lower 48, there have been some more general books about destroyed salmon populations. But has anyone told the Alaska salmon story in a concise and engaging manner?

If anyone has recommendations, it will be readers of this blog. I’m putting together a creative nonfiction summer reading list. Please let us all know here.

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