Read an excerpt from Back Seat with Fish: A Man’s Adventures in Angling and Romance, Henry’s memoir, in Harvard Review Online.
Back Seat with Fish
Back Seat with Fish: A Man’s Adventures in Angling and Romance is unlike any memoir you’ve ever read. Among the hundreds of published angling stories, none so deeply sound the sensual pleasures and tensions of human and piscine life as they emerge from the bedroom and riverbank. From flounder and first dates off working class Long Island, into the wide waters of Indiana, South Dakota, Oregon and all across Asia, Back Seat with Fish offers a wild and wonderful ride.
Drawing on his knowledge of literature, geography, and natural history, Hughes guides us through the watery world, sharing stories of the fish he’s caught and the characters he’s met. Here are tales of bass and bluefish, paddlefish and fugu, sharks and snakeheads, as well as exchanges with a variety of people, including a Sioux Indian friend from South Dakota, an elderly African American on the Mississippi, and his waterside companions in Japan, China, and Southeast Asia.
Fishing is a sport that crosses boundaries of race, ethnicity, gender, and class. In his travels, Hughes learns lessons on these issues as he interacts with people who share and sometimes challenge his love for fishing and eating fish. But this salty journey isn’t just for people who cast lines or love nature and travel. Back Seat with Fish is for anyone who enjoys a good story.
Available on Amazon.