More Fly Fishing Mysteries

Special Collections Case 02

For the past several years Special Collections has actively collected Fly Fishing mysteries, a little-known mystery fiction niche, but a growing one. Which is not at all unusual, since fly fishing is a rapidly expanding sport, and mystery readers number in the mid millions world-wide. We would like to believe that currently owning 27 unique titles gives us one of the largest collections anywhere, but we would be happy to be proved wrong. Discovering new reads is always a joy. 

Our fly-fishing mysteries draw largely from American authors, and are set primarily in Montana, Wisconsin, Maine and the Northeastern states. But British, Scottish and Russian locations are also featured. The late William G. Tapply, David Leitz, John Galligan, Victoria Houston, and Keith McCafferty have all authored two or more. Plots and characters are as diverse as the flies in a random amateur fly box, and although the quality of writing varies, as would be expected, there are some real gems here, including those by the aforementioned authors. Many novels have environmental or philosophical overtones. John Larison's Holding Lies deals with wild steelhead conservation, while McCafferty's Royal Wulff Murders takes on whirling disease. One of the most unusual is The Snowfly, a mystery about a mythic trout that ranges from Michigan to Vietnam. 

In addition to books, case two features two commercially packaged fly plates by Streamside Innovations, a vintage creel made by the legendary George Lawrence Co. of Portland, Oregon, donated by Jack C. Hutchinson. Additionally some striper flies and "Saltwater Angler" visor donated by Paul Ford, and a Stimson & Lambuth spiral bamboo rod, #19, 1938, donated by Danny Beatty. 

For a list of our complete collection of Fly-fishing mysteries check out the link"fly+fishing+mysteries/wwu_only"


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Paul Piper.