Email Address

Confessions of a Billfisherman

Written by John Angus

Published by The Halcyon Press in 2005


Star rating  ****


This is the first of two books John Angus has written about his time spent fishing for billfish; marlin and swordfish.


The book opens explaining how he travelled to New Zealand to support a close friend through a difficult time. They fish together for snapper and other fish for the table, but John notices Primetime, a big game fishing boat in the marina skippered by John Gregory, who had a reputation as a somewhat grouchy skipper.


The two fish together and a bond develops, helped by Angus moving his family from the UK to New Zealand permitting more time to be spent fishing; initially just for marlin, then for swordfish. Together they win several tournaments and set records. John Angus also introduces his children to the sport and they go on to set records and win tournaments following in their fathers footsteps.


This book is very much in the Zane Grey mould, telling stories of battling with giant fish which is hardly surprising as grey appears to be Angus’s hero.


As I read the sequel by chance before reading this work, I commented that there were items the reader would like to know which are covered in this work, and would recommend that the reader would benefit from reading these books in the order they are written.


One negative aspect is that the photographs at the start of the book do not align with the relative page of the text, some appearing pages away which I found mildly irritating and would benefit from tighter work by the publisher.


However, the book is enjoyable and I read it in one sitting from start to finish on a plane journey, which I rarely do which is perhaps the best recommendation.