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message 1: by Jackie (last edited Apr 23, 2019 07:01AM) (new)

Jackie | 167 comments Are we on for The Feather Thief in May?


message 2: by Tracy (new)

Tracy Wendt (wendtastic) | 357 comments Mod
Absolutely!
Also, I just posted a link to a giveaway for our June book.

We need suggestions for July, August, etc...


message 3: by Robin (new)

Robin (robinohara) | 5 comments Yes! I just joined and am excited to finally be a member of a book club!


message 4: by Jackie (new)

Jackie | 167 comments Sounds like I'll be starting the May book late. There's not a single copy in any library in Utah so the SLC library is going to buy it and loan it to my town. This is the second of our book club books that the library has bought for me


message 5: by Tracy (new)

Tracy Wendt (wendtastic) | 357 comments Mod
Robin wrote: "Yes! I just joined and am excited to finally be a member of a book club!"

So glad to have you, Robin!

We've been having two threads for each month's book - one that has no spoilers so we can discuss the book as we read it without giving anything away, and one that MAY contain spoilers for comments when folks finish. At least, that's the intent...We're still a pretty new group and open to suggestions.

Our book for May is The Feather Thief and June is Fruit of the Drunken Tree. To suggest future books, either start a conversation thread or post the books to the group's page. Glad you joined us!


message 6: by Tracy (new)

Tracy Wendt (wendtastic) | 357 comments Mod
Jackie wrote: "Sounds like I'll be starting the May book late. There's not a single copy in any library in Utah so the SLC library is going to buy it and loan it to my town. This is the second of our book club bo..."

That's nice that they can get it for you. I buy the books - my next house will need an extra bedroom for my library. And I'm ok with that.

I probably won't start until next week. I have some deadlines for work and kind of want to finish one of the other books I'm reading before starting this one. It's really good, but going slow. I am going to make some reading time this weekend to try and wrap it up.


message 7: by Jackie (new)

Jackie | 167 comments Tracy wrote: "Jackie wrote: "Sounds like I'll be starting the May book late. There's not a single copy in any library in Utah so the SLC library is going to buy it and loan it to my town. This is the second of o..."

I quit buying hard copy books a few years ago. There are very few I re-read and I curse them all on moving day lol


message 8: by Jackie (new)

Jackie | 167 comments It came today I'm so excited to get started! I can't wait to discuss with you Catherine!!!


message 9: by Tracy (new)

Tracy Wendt (wendtastic) | 357 comments Mod
Jackie wrote: "Tracy wrote: "Jackie wrote: "Sounds like I'll be starting the May book late. There's not a single copy in any library in Utah so the SLC library is going to buy it and loan it to my town. This is t..."

I re-read a lot of my books, or I'll get part of a story stuck in my head so I go back and read at least that part. Mostly I loan them out. My favorite part of moving is unpacking my books and deciding how I'm going to organize my books this time.


message 10: by Sam (new)

Sam | 217 comments I'm finishing up The Old Drift today and plan to start the Feather Thief with a gin & tonic on the porch this afternoon!


message 11: by Tracy (new)

Tracy Wendt (wendtastic) | 357 comments Mod
I am starting this weekend as well. Just finished A Gentleman in Moscow.

I have barely looked at the Feather Thief - I don't even know what it's going to be about. Fun!


message 12: by Paula (new)

Paula Greetings from the UK! I've just joined your group as I was looking for a book group that reads a good variety of books. I'm intrigued to read The Feather Thief as I've read about this case in our national news. Looking forward to discussing it with you all.


message 13: by Tracy (new)

Tracy Wendt (wendtastic) | 357 comments Mod
I'm on page 43. Started it not knowing at all what it was about. I'm intrigued...I am going to have to do some research to learn what is true history and what is fiction.

Welcome, Paula!

Don't forget, we need book recommends for July, August....


message 14: by Robin (new)

Robin (robinohara) | 5 comments I have finished the book. No spoilers here, don’t worry! I have to say I found the background of the birds and the feather industry a bit boring, but I was kind of glad for it as the book went on — kind of like I hated piano lessons when my Mom made me practice a long time ago, but now am very happy I did the groundwork. ;-)


message 15: by Robin (new)

Robin (robinohara) | 5 comments Btw thanks for the nice welcome Tracy Wendt!


message 16: by Jackie (new)

Jackie | 167 comments Catherine wrote: "Alfred R Wallace featured significantly in the first year of my degree. A delightful revisit, folks. Big thanks!"

What's your degree in? Or was it just a factor of first-year coursework?


message 17: by Sam (new)

Sam | 217 comments I'm only about 70 pages in but I'm loving it. I already know the story for a This American Life episode. I took a graduate course on Darwin and Evolution Theory so very much enjoyed the section on Wallace. I like that he goes into detail the travails of Wallace in securing these birds--risking his life, health and the lives of others--and than a fly tying thief steals them for salmon flies. I fly fish, tie a little bit and have been to many a national Flyfishers Conventions so I have a feel for the flytying, fly fishing subculture. Although I hang with the conservation types of course....


message 18: by Tracy (new)

Tracy Wendt (wendtastic) | 357 comments Mod
I didn't realize it was a true story! Somewhere along the line I thought I saw it described as fiction or a novel, so I was surprised.

I'm nearly done and loving it so much it's hard to work today! I just want to read and finish it. (But I won't, Jackie, because today is my "do AFS stuff day".)

I loved all the background on Wallace and Darwin and about the feathers. But the story...it's so fascinating. I think this is my favorite book club book since Nightingale.


message 19: by Sam (new)

Sam | 217 comments I've been sneaking in a few pages here and there during my workdays. Loving it too, and I already knew the story!


message 20: by Jackie (new)

Jackie | 167 comments I'm only about 50 pgs in. Can't wait for vacation next week to fly through this book. I LOVE everything so far, makes me miss school and learning these fascinating tales.


message 21: by Jackie (new)

Jackie | 167 comments I don't fly fish and have always found it to be too expensive and somewhat pretentious. Reading about "The Salmon Fly" makes me recognize that's the intention. Which is incredible to me because it's so unnecessary, salmon aren't picky!


message 22: by Sam (new)

Sam | 217 comments I found it a fun read! I love natural history and books on the subculture of flyfishing so I really enjoyed it.

Flyfishing can be pretentious but it doesn't have to be! It's not the style of fishermen I hang out with, most of whom have a little redneck in them. It can be done with affordable equipment. For me, I love the act of throwing a tied fly that is imitating a natural bug, and deciding which bug to throw based on what is happening around me on the river. It truly connects me with a moment in nature, on a river. And I find casting meditative. But I'm not obsessed. My favorite fly fishing trip is one that involves camping or backpacking, more hiking, some fishing. For me, the fishing is just another way to explore where I am.


message 23: by Jackie (last edited May 09, 2019 09:42PM) (new)

Jackie | 167 comments Wind knots are anti-meditative. I never got the casting bit down. I've only caught one small brown on a fly rod and it was foul hooked.... end of that hobby for me lol. But I get it. It's fun studying the hatch, trying to match it and watching fish behaviors. But I'm plenty satisfied with a spinning reel and a worm tipped lure


message 24: by Tracy (new)

Tracy Wendt (wendtastic) | 357 comments Mod
I really enjoyed the book. It was interesting how flyfishing was portrayed as a snooty sport. I don't know if it's because they were tying flies or if it's because they were salmon rather than trout fishermen, but it was definitely a different attitude than I am used to. I know flyfishing has that stigma, but I have known very few people who have been snobs about it. People usually offer me little tips and seem genuinely excited that there is another person into their sport - maybe it's generational and younger anglers are less snobby, maybe I've just been lucky, or maybe I am oblivious. I just do it for fun and I don't have any interest in tying. I just want to wade in a creek, drink a few beers, and enjoy being outside. If I catch a fish it's a bonus. I prefer to go alone, but usually don't because I'm scared of grizzlies and I feel safer with someone else along. I don't like tying knots, but I'm learning. I don't like wearing waders or fishing when it's cold. If it's not 100% relaxing, I'm ready to go home or switch to a hike. I guess for me it's mostly an excuse to get outside and away from people.

Since people are finishing I'll start a thread for those who have finished...


message 25: by Sam (new)

Sam | 217 comments I think it is also can be a little bit snootier among certain sectors on the East Coast than West Coast. When I worked for National Trout Unlimited, I did run into a little bit of the "tweed" crowd from the East Coast. And I suspect it is much more elitest in Britain where so many of the rivers are privatized and one has to be wealthy to have access. But yeah, it's not the western scene.


message 26: by Robin (new)

Robin (robinohara) | 5 comments Re: fly fishing portrayed as a snooty sport: I thought it was more that the salmon fly tiers themselves were a little snooty, and interestingly it was rarely about actual fishing — but more about the extreme craft of tying the fly. Also did anyone else besides me keep reading the word “tiers” pronounced like “teers?”


message 27: by Tracy (new)

Tracy Wendt (wendtastic) | 357 comments Mod
"tiers" - I did the same thing every time! I would think "this doesn't make any sense" then re-read the sentence and it would dawn on me that he meant tie-ers. Every time!


message 28: by Jackie (new)

Jackie | 167 comments I deal with the "elitist" attitude quite a bit here in Utah. One particularly large sportsmans group is lobbying to have some rivers, or sections of rivers reserved for special permit holders. Like the "conservation" tags of the hunting world. Essentially this privatizes those sections while maintaining state management. I can't tell you how much I disagree with the idea, I will have to do some serious soul searching if it comes to fruition. And surprisingly it's gaining more traction with our legislature than I had anticipated.
On top of that many of our regulations (e.g., artificial flies and lures only, bag limits) have no biological justification but are social protections to keep our fly anglers and guides "happy".

I struggle, a little, with the fly fishing community.


message 29: by Sam (new)

Sam | 217 comments Jackie--do you know what the local TU is doing? In Montana, the State TU organization lead the fight to stop the privatization of the rivers. There is pressure with some of the organizations who have rich donors who own land and want to privatize.

What bullshit. I sure hope it gets defeated. And I sure hope TU is on the right side of the fight in UT as they were in MT.


message 30: by Jackie (new)

Jackie | 167 comments Sam wrote: "Jackie--do you know what the local TU is doing? In Montana, the State TU organization lead the fight to stop the privatization of the rivers. There is pressure with some of the organizations who ha..."
That's a great suggestion Sam. I'm not sure where TU stands, or if they are even aware at this stage. I'll reach out and start that discussion


message 31: by Tracy (new)

Tracy Wendt (wendtastic) | 357 comments Mod
The other thing that kept confusing me was the term "salmon fly". I kept picturing the bug and having to remind myself that they meant "flies for salmon fishing." Sam, do you remember finding the salmon fly in your yard when we were housemates and no one believed it? That was the first one I had ever seen and I thought of that so many times while reading this.


message 32: by Sam (new)

Sam | 217 comments Yes! I still tell that story. They are amazing trout snacks.


message 33: by Tracy (new)

Tracy Wendt (wendtastic) | 357 comments Mod
I went from you showing my first in Spokane to fishing the legendary Rock Creek salmon fly hatch on Rock Creek in just a few years!


message 34: by Paula (new)

Paula Sorry to be late but I've finally finished the book, the delay was due to my faults not those of the book. I enjoyed the structure of the first few chapters, the way we were brought through the history of Wallace's feathers and the demand for them, they really hooked me into the book. I knew about the denial of the Asperger's diagnosis from the 'The American Life' podcast and this I found interesting because I know the psychologist who diagnosed him although we've never discussed this case. I'm undecided as to whether Edwin managed to fool the psychologist or not but I thought it was very naive of the author to suggest that because Edwin made eye contact he didn't have Asperger's, many people with AS do make eye contact. I gave this book 4 stars.


message 35: by Jackie (new)

Jackie | 167 comments Paula wrote: "Sorry to be late but I've finally finished the book, the delay was due to my faults not those of the book. I enjoyed the structure of the first few chapters, the way we were brought through the his..."

I'm curious about AS and wondered that about the eye contact. I work with a man who is extremely intelligent but very socially awkward... he misses almost all social cues and really doesn't engage with people until he's very comfortable. He makes eye contact but I've always wondered if it's AS or something else.
It's very interesting that you have a connection to the case.
I also wonder if it matters what Edwin thinks of the diagnosis.... sometimes we can play up symptoms when we learn of a disability or illness. Other times we start recognizing and attributing behaviors to their true cause, once we know what that is. Is it possible Edwin truly has AS, experienced heightened symptoms, or noticed them more, after his diagnosis and then pushed it aside later? I know this is how I've been with my ADD on and off since i was diagnosed in my mid thirties.


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