Sidney Spencer biography

JACK POWER

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Hi, Some of you have shown an interest in the life and wonderful writing of Sidney Spencer so you may be pleased to know that Dan O'Donovan's book on Spencer has just been published by Coch-y-Bonddu Books as No. 13 in its series of Angling Monographs. Dan, as I know only too well, is a natural researcher and a stickler for accuracy so the book might, or at least it should revive interest in one of the very best writers of the genre.
 

getthenet

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Hi, Some of you have shown an interest in the life and wonderful writing of Sidney Spencer so you may be pleased to know that Dan O'Donovan's book on Spencer has just been published by Coch-y-Bonddu Books as No. 13 in its series of Angling Monographs. Dan, as I know only too well, is a natural researcher and a stickler for accuracy so the book might, or at least it should revive interest in one of the very best writers of the genre.
Much appreciated Jack.... thanks!
 

Nigel Passmore

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I've ordered a copy of the standard version which is £25. There is a delux version which is just shy of £100.


I'll post a review once I've read it.

Regards

NHP
 

Nigel Passmore

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I've now finished reading this. Firstly, one must say congratulations to the author Dan O'Donovan for a tremendous piece of detective work. He was able to locate and speak to many people who either knew the Spencers (or were children of people who knew the Spencers) or the Ghillies he fished with. Spencer's neice, Sandra was very fond of him and was able to provide the author with much first hand information.

I learned a lot about Spencer that I didn't know before. For example it is oft stated that he died in a car crash. That's not strictly correct. He was in a car crash (he hit a parked car when clearly he was having a heart episode while driving and lost concentration) but actually died of a heart attack in hospital early in the morning the following day. He'd had a pacemaker fitted earlier that year.

The author points out that the greatest loss of all is Spencer's diaries as he was apparently a miticulous keeper of records. They vanished after his death. The relevance of this is Spencer was prone in his books to refer to places he fished and people he fished with without naming them. So there is still an element of mystery.

The book is written in chapters by events rather than chronologically. I think it would flow much better if it had been a track of his life building in those events rather than jumping arround between unrelated subjects. However, that is a style thing and doesn't detract from the information contained nor the effort to find it.

A final word. I appreciate with print runs likely to be small it is difficult to produce a robust product. If you buy the version I did you'll need to treat it very carefully.

This is not a how to fish book. It is one for people who might be interested in the man behind the books. If you either are, or feel you might be, I commend this book to you.

Regards

NHP
 
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