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The Great Minnesota Fish Book

2008
Author:

Tom Dickson
Illustrations by Joseph R. Tomelleri

The Great Minnesota Fish Book

From walleye to bowfin to stickleback—vivid and entertaining profiles of Minnesota’s many different fishes

Fishing is one of Minnesota’s consummate pastimes. The North Star state boasts the highest number of anglers per capita in the nation and the most fishing lakes. An elegant full-color work for everyone from the passionate angler to the up-north cabin dweller, The Great Minnesota Fish Book conveys the love and fascination—and in the case of eelpout, the disdain—that people have for the fishes of our home state.

Put a fishing rod in Tom Dickson’s hands and you never know just what he might catch. His enthusiasm for fish and fishing have taken him to the far corners of Minnesota to fish for everything from walleyes to mooneyes. Few anglers can claim a similar pedigree. A thorough researcher, Dickson can delve into a dry fisheries science document and extract nuggets of fun and useful information. Few writers are better suited to write about Minnesota’s wondrous array of fish species.

Shawn Perich, author of Fishing Lake Superior

Fishing is one of Minnesota’s consummate pastimes. The North Star state boasts the highest number of anglers per capita in the nation and the most fishing lakes. Minnesota is abundant in knowledge about how to catch game fish, but there is little information on the lore and natural history of such prized species as the walleye and largemouth bass, not to mention lesser-known varieties such as the brook stickleback and pirate perch. From trophies to bait, The Great Minnesota Fish Book tells stories of these aquatic species in rich, colorful detail.

The Great Minnesota Fish Book pairs engaging and revealing stories about the history, habitat, and culture of more than one hundred species with strikingly lifelike depictions by world-renowned fish illustrator Joseph R. Tomelleri. Providing defining features for easy identification, descriptions of habitat, growth patterns, and behavior, as well as historical anecdotes, Dickson makes a convincing case for the appreciation of all fish and their important place within Minnesota’s aquatic ecosystems. Where else can you learn about the American eel, a fish that lives throughout southern Minnesota yet spawns in the Caribbean Sea? Or the Johnny darter, which reproduces upside down? Or the monstrous lake sturgeon that can reach more than 300 pounds and swims in waters from Lake of the Woods to the Mississippi River? Nowhere, until now. Tom Dickson takes us on a lively tour of Minnesota fish—the good, the bad, and the ugly.

An elegant full-color work for everyone from the passionate angler to the up-north cabin dweller, The Great Minnesota Fish Book conveys the love and fascination—and in the case of eelpout, the disdain—that people have for the fishes of our home state.

The Great Minnesota Fish Book

Tom Dickson grew up fishing in Minnesota, is a freelance writer and cartoonist, and is the editor of Montana Outdoors. He is the coauthor of Fishing for Buffalo and has contributed articles to National Wildlife, Sporting Classics, and Fly Fisherman and is a frequent contributor to the Minnesota Conservation Volunteer. He lives in Montana.

The Great Minnesota Fish Book

Put a fishing rod in Tom Dickson’s hands and you never know just what he might catch. His enthusiasm for fish and fishing have taken him to the far corners of Minnesota to fish for everything from walleyes to mooneyes. Few anglers can claim a similar pedigree. A thorough researcher, Dickson can delve into a dry fisheries science document and extract nuggets of fun and useful information. Few writers are better suited to write about Minnesota’s wondrous array of fish species.

Shawn Perich, author of Fishing Lake Superior

Like a well-stocked tackle box, The Great Minnesota Fish Book is a tribute to the diverse fish life that roams the state’s lakes, rivers, and streams. If you’ve ever wondered what’s on the end of the line or swimming under the dock, rock, or country creek bank, Tom Dickson has written about the finned creatures—ranging from famous to infamous to unheard of—to tell you. Complete with illustrations by Joseph R. Tomelleri, the best fish artist above water, this book is a real keeper.

Ron Schara

A beautiful and informative introduction to the great diversity of fishes in Minnesota, besides the ones that taste good sautéed in butter. This book reminds us that diversity in nature is not always ‘useful’—that is, unless you regard beauty as something of utmost importance and worth preserving, as I do. The resplendent gems of Minnesota's waterways are here on full display.

James Prosek

The Great Minnesota Fish Book is fascinating. Dickson profiles the habits and history, natural and human-influenced, of each fish, and mixes in a little advice to anglers. . . . The book is gorgeous. So gorgeous, in fact, that I suspect a majority of copies will live on coffee tables in lavish northern Minnesota Cabins. Each fish is illustrated by Joseph R. Tomelleri, a Kansas City biologist and artist who is to fish what Audubon is to birds.

MinnPost

The Great Minnesota Fish Book belongs on every Minnesota cabin’s coffee table. No matter your age or experience, you’ll learn something new on every page.

Twin Cities Daily Planet

The illustrations by Joseph R. Tomelleri look good enough to eat, or mount on your wall.

Rochester Post-Bulletin

A perfect coffee-table book, this hardcover offering features eye-catching color artwork and just about everything you’d want to know about the many fish species that call Minnesota home.

The Brainerd Dispatch

Dickson’s breezy style and encyclopedic knowledge take us about as deep into this stream as anyone—angler or not—would want to go, and Tomelleri’s spectacular paintings of these finned creatures keep us wanting to come back for more.

Minneapolis Observer Quarterly

A great book to illustrate another aspect of one of Minnesota’s great natural resources: fish.

White Bear Press

It will be referred to for generations, whether at your home or gracing the cabin coffee table at the lake.

Ely Echo

An elegant full-color work for everyone from the passionate angler to the up-north cabin dweller, The Great Minnesota Fish Book conveys the love and fascination—and in the case of eelpout, the disdain—that people have for the fishes of our home state.

East Side Review

More than 100 species of native Minnesotan fish have been captured and portrayed in this magnificent visual and literary creel for your delight. Fisherman, biologist, illustrator Joseph R. Tomelleri’s gorgeous illustrations rivet the eye, while Tom Dickson’s lively text keeps you swimming through the book.

Lavender Magazine

Beautifully written by Tom Dickson and illustrated by Joe Tomelleri, the book is an exercise in Dickson’s passion not only for primary sportfish species, but for his long love affair with ‘those other fish,’ from the stickleback to suckers, gar, and sturgeon—and many more.

In-Fisherman

Never again will you wonder what fish you just saw at the end of the dock; it’s hard to imagine a more relevant coffee table book for your lake home.

Lake and Home Magazine

The illustrations are so lifelike you may expect the fish to swim off the page.

The Ely Summer Times

The Great Minnesota Fish Book would make a beautiful coffee table book, especially for a cabin’s coffee table. The text is informative with nice details about where these species hang out, where their names came from, as well as state and world size records. . . . The northern hogsucker, by the way, is cuter than you may think . . . at least as Joseph draws it.

Lake Superior Magazine

A book that is as enjoyable as a day on the lake.

Cook County News=Herald