The Bright Country: A Fisherman's Return to Trout, Wild Water, and Himself

Harry Middleton, Author Simon & Schuster $21.5 (0p) ISBN 978-0-671-75859-2
Middleton ( The Spine of Time ) is a superb prose stylist whose book is no more about fishing than Catch-22 is about military aircraft. Instead, this meandering, idiosyncratic memoir chronicles his bouts with profound depression, his fear that he was developing a brain tumor--a condition common in his family--and his mother's death from brain cancer. Having been aided by an understanding psychiatrist, medication and his continuing love of trout fishing, Middleton writes movingly of his mother and, with a somewhat condescending affection, of memorable oddballs in his life. But his view of humanity is pervasively pessimistic and reminiscent of Celine's. Middleton sees human beings as ``staggering imperfections'' whose existence is ``a history of the miserable, the embarrassing, and the ridiculous.'' His preference, and in part his salvation, is for the earth and the wild water, of which a blind brown trout is representative. This unusual volume is beautifully written. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 08/02/1993
Release date: 08/01/1993
Genre: Nonfiction
Paperback - 304 pages - 978-0-87108-904-5
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