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Red Summer: The Danger, Madness, and Exaltation of Salmon Fishing in a Remote Alaskan Village Hardcover – May 13, 2008
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"...An honest, refreshingly understated look at a profession that's known for, well, exaggeration>"-- Outside Magazine
"Red Summer is about life at the extreme edge of the food chain, and nowhere is the food chain more violent, more awesome or more intense than in Egekik."--New York Times Book Review
From the Inside Flap
Set in the tiny Native village of Egegik on the shores of Alaska's Bristol Bay, Bill Carter's Red Summer is the thrilling story of one man's journey from novice to seasoned fisherman over the course of four beautiful, brutal summers in one of the earth's few remaining wild places. As millions of salmon race toward their annual spawning grounds, Carter learns the ancient, back-breaking trade of the set net fisherman, one of the most exhilarating and dangerous jobs in the world.
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Top customer reviews
As for the writing itself, just check out the author's credentials ... it's easy to tell that he has the skill set to create an engaging (and gripping) read.
I worked eight summers in Egegik (1994-2001), starting in the cannery, set-netting for two summers and drift fishing for four. I lived and worked with two long time Egegik families (one not so much a family, but a clan). Carter has squarely captured the joy, exhaustion, laughter, anger, dissipation, recklessness, heroism, bawdiness, and adventure of Egegik summers. Everything he writes in his book is true and he does not exagerate (hard as that may seem!). The people he writes about (many I also knew) are just as lost, wild, mean, strong, and gripping as he portrays them.
Carter's book isn't the last word about Egegik summers (there are many many books that could be written about the drift fishing, the cannery workers, the fish and game officers, and more), but it'd dead on accurate for the territory it covers. His book shows why so many of us went back summer after summer and still dream of doing so now that we've moved on to the rest of our lives.
I knew my cousin Sharon chose a hard life after she and I graduated from high school (I went to college and she went fishing; this was 1979 and she has done so to this day) but I never knew just how hard that life was for her, and I never, ever heard a complaint about it.
Bill wrote of his life with Sharon as his captain, and with the folks of Egegik, in such a way that you feel as though you are right there with them all. He brings you in from the first page and you feel saddened at the end because you want to read more!
Thanks Bill for writing of your experiences so descriptively that I felt I had spent wonderful, miserable, exciting, tiring, and rewarding summers with my cousin.