Fishing in the Air

by Sharon Creech, Illustrations by Chris Raschka

HarperCollins, September, 2000.
Picture Book, 32 pages.
ISBN: 0060281111
Ages 4-8

Fishing in the Air by Sharon Creech Fishing in the Air is more than an adult telling a story about fishing with his father. It is a story full of poetry and feeling. It is also a story sensitive to the things that are special to young boys, doing things together with their fathers. Shared activity with a father is always dear to a boy's heart, and this little story celebrates those feelings on many levels.

It is the memory of a father who pointed out how the street lamps "looked like tiny moons all in a row". On nearly every page of this story is a simile or a metaphor that an adult can enjoy with a child. Each page can be a new adventure in seeing the poetry in adventure.

The story itself, stripped down to the plot, is how a father remembers how his father got him up early while it was still dark, helped him dig for worms, pack a lunch and drive to a special place for a day of fishing. Along the way the father points out all the beauties of nature, and then remembers his own father and the house in which he grew up. All of the mystery of the stories an adult tells a listening child are evoked. The important details are the feelings that the memories bring forth. In a very real way, if you have ever wondered what going fishing was really all about, this little story will explain it so you can understand. Fishing is so much more than catching fish. It is shared feelings that can only be expressed through simile and metaphor. That is perhaps the real reason that those who love to fish can never put into words what going fishing really means.

--Sarah Reaves White

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This review was published in the February, 2001 of The Internet Writing Journal.

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