Reading Room

From time to time I will post comments on books I read and authors that I enjoy – not so much critiques or reviews but just commentary to let you know it is available if you are in the mood for a good book.  In the meanwhile, here are lists of books from my bookshelves that I have enjoyed and continue to enjoy. BTW – you can click on the highlighted titles to read the descriptions and reviews or purchase.

You can also search for new and older books on the various bookseller sites such as:

John-Gierach greeting bookseller Peter Gambitsky of
John Gierach greeting bookseller Peter Gambitsky of

David Foley Books

Dave-Foley at Somerset
Dave Foley at Somerset

David Foley-Sporting Books
76 Bonny View Rd.
West Hartford, CT O6107

The Angling Bookstore

The Angling-Bookstore
The Angling Bookstore

A helpful site for finding vintage books as well as some bargains.

Who, Where and How

A. K. BestFly Tying with A. K., (2008), Stackpole Books (How to).

Hoagy Carmichael's latest book - Side Casts Hoagy Carmichael’s latest book – Side Casts

Hoagy Carmichael – Side Casts by Hoagy Carmichael

A Master’s Guide to Building a Bamboo Fly Rod –  in which Hoagy details Everett Garrison’s rod making.

George Daniels – Dynamic Nymphing.  Clearly written and well illustrated (using drawings and multiple color photos) to assist in the lesson, or should I say lessons.

Harry Darbee with Mac FrancisCatskill Flytier, (1977), J. B. Lippencott Co. (History).

Ed Engle – (How to) Tying Small Flies, (2004); Fishing Small Flies, (2005); Splitting Cane, (2002), Stackpole Books.

Roger Keckeissen –  Art Flick, Catskill Legend – A Remembrance of His Life and Times by  Published 2014 by Clark City Press, 197 pages with photos.

Austin M. Francis – Catskill Rivers, Birthplace of American Fly Fishing, (1983), Nick Lyons Books/Winchester (History); Land of Little Rivers, A Story in Photos of Catskill Fly Fishing, (1999), Beaverkill Press (History).

Poul JorgensenDry-Fly Patterns for the New Millennium, (2002), CFFCM.

Nick Karas – Brook Trout, (1997), Lyons Press (History); The Complete Book of Striped Bass, (1974), Winchester Press (History).

Gary LaFontaineThe Dry Fly, New Angles, (1990), Greycliff Publishing Co.

Eric LeiserThe Dettes, A Catskill Legend, (1992), Willowkill Press (History).

John McPheeThe Founding Fish, (2002), FSG (History).

Kathy J. Scott: (autobiographical)

Moose in the Water, Bamboo on the Bench, (2000);

Headwaters Fall as Snow, (2003);

Changing Planes(2008);

Brook Trout Forest,  (2011), Alder Creek Publishing.

Fred ThornerHow to Get Started Fly Fishing… (2011), Once you have read my book – How to Fly Fish for Trout, the FIRST Book to Read, it is a good idea to read a few more to round out your perspective and fill in some voids.  A good place to start is with Fred’s book.  Fred is a generous guy and fellow Long Islander who provides free seminars as well as works with our Vets and State Parks to teach people how to fly fish.

Mike VallaTying Catskill-Style Dry Flies, (2009), HeadWater Books/Stackpole Books (History & How to).

Recent Reads & Friends

On Montauk, A Literary Celebration; Editors: Celine Keating and Ed Johann, 2016 (Harbor Electronic Publishing) Amazon

Four Fish, The Future of the Last Wild Food; by Paul Greenberg, 2010 (Penguin) Amazon

Stephen Sautner: Fish On Fish Off, The Misadventures and Odd Encounters of the Self-Taught Angler. (2016) Lyons Press

Jerry Kustich: 

At the Rivers Edge, (2001); 

A Wisp in the Wind,  (2005), West River Publishing; 

Around the Next Bend,  (2013), Headwater Books (autobiographical).

Jerry Kustich

Don Miller with Bill Teresco & John Randolph

Dapping, a Fly Fishing Technique, (2014), Self Published (How to).

Lee Hartman

Lee Hartman
With Lee Hartman, an extraordinary outfitter & author of Trails in a Wild Frontier

Trails in a Wild Frontier: Kola Peninsula – Siberia – Kamchatka, (2014), Self Published – By Lee Hartman – The story of how salmon fishing in Russia was opened to the world of fly fishers.

Robert J. Romano (Stories/Novels): 

Shadows in the Stream, (2005); North of Easie, (2009); West of Rangeley, (2012); Christmas in the Wild, (2014); Brook Trout Blues, (2015 release), Birch Brook Press.

Rob Romano & his new book: Brook Trout Blues

Angelo Peluso

My friend Angelo Peluso's books on fly fishing and his novel Mount Misery
My friend Angelo Peluso’s books on fly fishing and his novel Mount Misery

Where to go

Fly Fishing Long Island

By Angelo Peluso, (2007) Countryman Press. Fresh water and Salt from NYC to the Points of Montauk and Orient – and everything in between.

Long Island’s Best Freshwater Fishing

By Tom Schlichter (2004), Jostens Printing and Publishing. This is the single most comprehensive guide to every stream, lake and puddle that hold fish on Long Island.  Kudos to Tom for a great job.

Trout Fishing on Long Island

The Long Island Chapter of Trout Unlimited has a great web site with lots of information.  If you click on the top menu item: Fishing you will find notes and even maps of the trout streams.  While you are on the site, why not join up!

A Fly Fisherman’s Guide to Catskill Coldwater Streams and Ponds

By fly fisherman John Mordock, (2008), Marson Publications/Hidden River Books. The most thorough guide to the Catskills I have come across with photos and an index.

A Guide to Fishing the Farmington River

By the Farmington River Anglers Association, (1995). Available at local fly shops such as  Upcountry Sportfishing. A wonderfully illustrated and well written history and guide to this great Connecticut river.

Fran Betters’ Ausable River Guide

A half century of Fran’s experience on the river. Published 1999, Adirondack Sport Publications.

The Montana Angling Guide

By Chuck Fothergill and Bob Sterling, (2002), Stream-Stalker Publishing. I love this book! I bring it with me every time I go to Montana and have marked all my past travels on its pages.  It has river maps, descriptions, resources and more.

Trails in a Wild Frontier: Kola Peninsula – Siberia – Kamchatka, (2014), Self Published – By Lee Hartman – The story of how salmon fishing in Russia was opened to the world of fly fishers.

Rick & Jerry KustichFly Fishing for Great Lakes Steelhead, (1999), West River Publishing (History/How to).

Advanced Fly Fishing for Great Lakes Steelhead,  Rick Kustich, (2013), Headwaters Books/Stackpole Books.

Ed Van PutThe Beaverkill, (1996), Lyons & Burford (History).

Leonard M. Wright, Neversink (1991) Atlantic Monthly Press. The whole story.


Shameless Self Promotion

Somerset 2017
Somerset 2017

Books by Tom McCoy:

How to Improve Your Fly Fishing & Catching. 30 fly fishing tips and tactics. Newly released in December 2016.  Click here to see some reviews. Available on


How to Fly Fish for Trout, the First Book to Read, (2014) 


Letters to Mack, Book One: Correspondence on a Fishing Life, (2014) 


Letters to Mack 2: Correspondence from Montana to Montauk, (2014) 


Letters to Mack 3: Correspondence from Islamorada to Pulaski, (2015)


You can ask for them at your favorite fly shop or book store.  They are available to retailers from the publisher,

If you would like an autographed copy go to Drop me a line and let me know what you want.


I like some authors who write more than fishing books, although some of them were fishermen. Take a look:

Paul Hyde BonnerThe Glorious Mornings, Stories on Shooting and Fishing, (1954), Scribners;

Hotel Talleyrand, (1953) Scribners;

With Both Eyes Open, (1956) Scribners;

SPQR, (1952), Scribners.

Jack Finney – Time and Again, (1970), Simon & Schuster

Robert FrostCollected Works – or just any of his many published works and compendiums.

Ernest HemingwayThe Nick Adams Stories, (1925, 1955), Amereon House;

In Our Time, (1925, 1930, 1958) Scribners; and

Islands in the Stream, (1970), and all of his other books!

James JoyceDubliners, (1914).

James RedfieldThe Celestine Prophecy, (1993), Warner Books.



I love old books and have a few…  (the links may not always work due to the age of the books but you can always search for them.) 

Trout by Ray Bergman, (1938, 1976), Knopf.

Complete Book of Fly Fishing by Joe Brooks, (1958), Outdoor Life.

Fur, Feathers and Steel by Reuben R. Cross, (1940) Dood, Mead & Co.

A Wedding Gift by John Taintor Foote, (1924), Appleton & Co. and Anglers All, 1947, D. Appleton and Company, (Appleton Century)

New Streamside Guide by Art Flick, (1969), Crown.

Streamside Guide by Art Flick, (1947), Putnam.

This Wonderful World of Trout by Charles K. Fox, (1963, 1971), Freshet Press.

The Dry Fly and Fast Water by  George M. L. La Branch, (1914), Scribners.

Dana Lamb – One of my Favorites –

On Trout Streams and Salmon Rivers by Dana Lamb (1963)

Bright Salmon and Brown Trout, (1964);

Woodsmoke and Watercress, (1965);

Not Far from the River, (1967);

Some Silent Places , (1969);

Greenhighlanders and Pink Ladies, (1971);

Where the Pools are Bright and Deep, (1973);

Beneath the Rising Mist, (1979);

The Fishing’s Only Part of It, (1982).

Fishing Behind the Eight Ball by Harlan Major, (1952), Telegraph Press.

In the Ring of the Rise by Vincent Marino, (1976), Crown Publishing.

The Practical Fly Fisherman by A. J. McClane, (1953, 1975), Prentice-Hall.

Fishing with McClane by George Reiger (Ed.), (1975), Prentice-Hall.

Fly-Tying by Helen Shaw, (1963) Ronald Press.

Fishless Days, Angling Nights by Sparse Grey Hackle (aka Alfred Miller), (1971), Crown Publishers.

Trout Madness by Robert Traver (aka John Voelker), (1960), St. Martins Press; Trout Magic, (1974), Crown Publishers.

Fisherman’s Luck by Henry Van Dyke, (1901), Scribner.