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A Field Guide to Murder & Fly Fishing

4.16  ·  Rating details ·  91 ratings  ·  29 reviews
A high altitude lake is the point of departure for these stories of dark adventure, in which fishing guides, amateur sportsmen, teenage misfits, scientists, mountaineers, and expatriates embark on disquieting journeys of self-discovery in far-flung places.
Paperback, 266 pages
Published May 15th 2018 by Green Writers Press (first published March 22nd 2017)
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Jacob Appel
Jan 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing
In his first short story collection, novelist Tim Weed shows his stunningly impressive range—transporting readers from the heights of the Andes and the depths of the Amazon to the backstreets of Rome and Granada. His eye for detail and precise gift for language reveal a writer with a panorama of expertise: a man who knows birds and fish, camping and skiing, blue collar New England and hippie Colorado and the seedy underbelly of Cuba. He can sum up an entire world in the turn of a perfect phrase: ...more
Sep 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Tim Weed’s wonderfully titled A Field Guide to Murder and Fly Fishing is a fiction collection of the first order. Think Hemingway or Harrison. I found myself parceling out the stories to make them last. This is the good stuff. This is why we write and read.
Melissa Lowe
Nov 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing
In A Field Guide to Murder and Fly Fishing, Tim Weed demonstrates in thirteen immersive selections an uncanny insight into human foibles and, in some cases, with no expiation. Rarely do I read depth of characters that are believable and also surprise me. Weed has written a series of vivid, highly varied, and completely convincing pieces, which are masterfully crafted and drew me into the story quickly, keeping me invested to the end.
The Foreigner is the most emotionally affecting story for me, a
Mark Stevens
Oct 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
"A Field Guide to Murder & Fly Fishing" starts with a story called “The Camp at Cutthroat Lake.”

The opening is bucolic:

“Two boys and a man in his late forties sit in an aluminum rowboat in the middle of a lake at the bottom of a broad mountain basin. The lake mirrors the sky of a calm summer afternoon, but tendrils of cold air coming down from the surrounding crags will soon dispel the fragile illusion of warmth.”

If there are two words that sum up this entire collection of sharply-drawn, memorab
Ron Samul
Nov 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing
A Field Guide to Murder & Fly Fishing: Stories by Tim Weed. Green Writers Press. 2017. 978-0-9974528-7-7 ($24.95) Hardcover.

Diving into this collection of short stories by writer and travel expert Tim Weed, you might want to pack your bags and roam the continent in search of great harrowing adventures. And in some ways, this collection delivers on that. But embedded in these narratives, is a deeper longing, a desperate, and sometimes frustrating relationship, between his protagonist’s fraught d
Crystal King
Oct 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: literary
Reading this wonderful book made me wish that I was a student in Tim Weed's classes--I want to absorb some of his mastery of language. Tim is able to easily transport the reader into other places and times, whether it's a granite quarry in New Hampshire or the cobblestones of my favorite city, Rome. His stories are filled with deep human connections, love, friendship and family, that touch both the heart and mind with memory and imagination. He makes the unfamiliar accessible and I could easily ...more
Troy Shaheen
Nov 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Weed's stories begin during quests for self-discovery -- travel, tests of meddle, time alone -- and often end in the chaotic, the primal, the violent. From New England to Latin America to Italy to the American West -- this book’s characters find their truths in the moments when the typical narrative slides off the rails and plunges into the unknown. This is a great read for those who enjoy pushing themselves out of their comfort zone and playing on the fringes of the dark and the dangerous. Grea ...more
Patrick Joyce
May 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This collection of stories by Tom Weed is grounded in the specificity of its settings, all of which contain hazards of one kind or another: a mountain lake, a jungle peak, an Amazonian river, a prairie giving way to construction, a seashore suddenly overcome by the tide, a city stuck in the past, a snowy slope (or two). But it is also full of mystery, and much of the mystery is cosmic. The question throughout the stories is this: does the universe look indifferently on the bad choices made by it ...more
Gene Morton
Apr 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Tim Weed has the strategy I want to learn. He submitted short stories to literary magazine contests and won a few. These stories are now in one bound volume with others he may or may not have submitted, but at this time have not won any prizes. Some of them are troubling. Some are entertaining. Some have flashes of brilliance, such as his character development in one of the winners--the smoothest description I've ever read. As a contest winner, he received their monetary prizes--not much but sol ...more
Brooksie Fontaine
Mar 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Each story is visceral, wickedly funny, and emotionally potent. They immerse us in settings as distant as Rome, Granada, and the Amazon, and makes them feel as tangible as our own back yard. The language is beautiful, painting scenes and settings as vividly as watercolors. With each narrative, the tension gradually tightens, a taut string ready to snap.

His characters are relatable, familiar, and human, even when -- hence the title+ -- they are committing acts as violent and questionable as murd
Lit 101
Sep 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This short story collection will have you completely in its grasp. From beginning to end, each story is a unique and fascinating adventure. I couldn't put this book down. Tim Weed's spare, powerful prose does not leave you, as he drops the reader first on a mountaintop then down a dark river and beyond. Weed spins a subtle weave of darkness throughout these tales with superb skill. It was a thrilling ride.
Jun 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
After receiving a copy through a Goodreads Giveaway, I was pleasantly surprised by this lovely little book of short stories. I took my time and read one story at a time and enjoyed every one of them. I never was a reader of short stories before but this author has changed my mind. I'll be looking forward to reading more of Tim Weed's books in the future.
Nancy Kilgore
Oct 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
At first I thought this was a “guy’s book,” with mostly male characters, and stories of adventure. But the writing is so good, complex and descriptive, that I was easily drawn in. Each story presents a harrowing situation and people whose characters are tested and deepened. Tim Weed is especially good at endings with a surprising twist.
Mattea Lynn
Mar 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing
If you want an be whisked away to the narrow streets of Italy or even the mouth of the Amazon river, choose Tim Weed as your guide through his short story collection A Field Guide to Murder and Fly Fishing. Weed takes you on an intercontinental adventure that not only brings a destination to life but also shows the intimacies of being a traveler looking in on a culture. Whether it’s through the eyes of teenager tripping on LSD in New Hampshire or a photographer traipsing through the back alleys ...more
Mar 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Not normally an enthusiastic reader of short-story fiction, A FIELD GUIDE TO MURDER AND FLY FISHING had changed my mind. Tim is a powerful wordsmith and a creative and introspective thinker – very provocative indeed.
These stories lead one to examine one’s own past with a sense of wonder and thought-provoking renewed perspective. Tim’s love and appreciation for fly fishing, travel, and his observations of various personalities show forth in abundance, as does his pure love of writing.
Included amo
Nov 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Get hold of this book and get a grip for, at the very least - as the Dead put it - "least you'll enjoy the ride." Tim Weed's recent book is about truckin' wayfarers who, mistakenly stuck in the present, head off in search of a path to the future misguided by a pointless compass. "Field Guide" is a collection of fanciful short stories in which senseless endings are unpredicted and loose ends are left hanging. All of which might leave the reader at the least temporarily stuck on "pause," gasping f ...more
William Pitsenberger
Jan 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
The eclectic mashup of the title of Tim Weed’s new collection, A Field Guide to Murder and Fly Fishing, aptly becomes this group of stories, ranging in style, setting and plot from magical realism to straightforward narrative, from an actual but well-deserved murder to a harrowing account of a near-drowning while fishing to an out-and-out ghost story, from Central America to Rome to New England. In spite of those differences, a common thread runs through the stories of the tenuous hold we have o ...more
Dec 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is an outstanding story collection. And while the prose isn't exactly Hemingway-terse, it still brings Papa to mind: men fishing, men on skis, men climbing mountains. But there's also a magical element here that calls Borges to mind. Who is that strange woman at the bar? Who is that young climber's companion? It's altogether a satisfying read.
Apr 25, 2020 rated it really liked it
Short story writers seem to give themselves permission to create flat-earth situations, where the characters and action move along and move along and then, suddenly, drop out of sight, leaving me, the Audible listener, wondering if there's more. I enjoyed these stories, but I wondered from time to time if Mr. Weed had simply had enough of his characters and decided to move on to the next story.
Jun 05, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I won this book on Goodreads. This author has a natural ability to bring out the story as if you were standing next to the main character. His descriptions are priceless. The stories themselves were often a thought provoking and surreal. Very enjoyable read.
Rebekah Suwak
Jul 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
One of the best collection of short stories I’ve read in years! If you love adventure, stories about finding yourself and travel you won’t be able to put this book down. I loved it so much I read half of the book in one night!
Jun 20, 2018 rated it liked it
There's neither a lot of murder nor a lot of fly fishing in this book of short stories.

It would probably be better titled: A Field Guide to (Imagined) LSD Trips and Adolescent Boys.
Dede Cummings
May 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
A Field Guide to Murder & Fly Fishing is one of those short story collections that stays with you—and this one takes you on journeys, too. Tim Weed is a fiction writer to watch. ...more
Maria Ogden
Aug 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Great collection of short stories, each quite different but all nicely connected. This writer knows how to tell a good story!
Doug Klemczak
Aug 09, 2020 rated it liked it
Overall I enjoyed the book but most of the stories ended too soon.
Donna Huber
I don't typically like short stories but after reading a collection of domestic thrillers that I really enjoyed I thought I would try more short stories. Unfortunately, I struggled with this book. There was nothing particularly wrong with the book. I just think I'm not the target audience. It would make a great Father's Day gift for a literary dad. Read my full review at Girl Who Reads ...more
Christopher Bramley
Nov 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Each story did a great job of building a feeling of anticipation. This was the common thread for me. Tim Weed is a master of giving you the feeling that "something is about to happen." The great part about this book is, sometimes something happens, and sometimes it doesn't. These stories don't contain your typical Hollywood endings. They paint a picture of the past, and leave it at that. For me, many of the stories generated a feeling of bittersweet nostalgia, and pulled on the heartstrings. I h ...more
Jul 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A wonderful collection of stories. I couldn't put this book down. Good thing I'm retired. I don't recall reading a collection of stories where all of them were top-notch.
rated it really liked it
Mar 08, 2020
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Tim Weed's first novel, Will Poole's Island, was named one of Bank Street College of Education’s Best Books of the Year. His short fiction collection, A Field Guide to Murder & Fly Fishing, made the 2018 Eric Hoffer Book Award Grand Prize Shortlist and was a finalist in the short story category for both the 2018 American Fiction Awards and the 2017 International Book Awards. Tim is the winner of a ...more

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