The Last Fish Tale: The Fate of the Atlantic and Survival in Gloucester, America’s Oldest Fishing Port and Most Original Town

Mark Kurlansky, Author , illus. by the author. Ballantine $25 (269p) ISBN 978-0-345-48727-8

Bestselling author Kurlansky (Cod ; The Big Oyster ) provides a delightful, intimate history and contemporary portrait of the quintessential northeastern coastal fishing town: Gloucester, Mass., on Cape Anne. Illustrated with his own beautifully executed drawings, Kurlansky’s book vividly depicts the contemporary tension between the traditional fishing trade and modern commerce, which in Gloucester means beach-going tourists. One year ago, a beach preservation group enraged fishermen by seeking to harvest 105 acres of prime fishing ground for sand to deposit on the shoreline. Wealthy yacht owners compete with fishermen for prime dockage, driving up prices. Fishermen also contend with federal limits on their catches in an effort to maintain sustainable fisheries. But while cod are protected from extinction, the fishermen are not. Some boats must go 100 or more miles out to sea—a danger for small boats with few crew members. Tragedies abound, while one, that of the swordfish boat Andrea Gail, documented by Sebastian Junger in A Perfect Storm, brought even more tourists to Gloucester. (June 3)

Reviewed on: 04/14/2008
Release date: 06/01/2008
Genre: Nonfiction
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Analog Audio Cassette - 978-1-4332-1476-9
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Open Ebook - 150 pages - 978-0-345-50773-0
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Paperback - 269 pages - 978-1-59448-374-5
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Hardcover - 304 pages - 978-0-224-08245-7
Hardcover - 320 pages - 978-0-224-08571-7
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