Merlin Unwin Books

"Merlin Unwin Books are lively, innovative countryside book publishers.

Their well-produced range of rural, wildlife, fieldsports and fishing books never fail to inform and entertain."

Philip Dunne MP
co-founder of Ottakar’s bookshops

Fishing on the Front Line

Nick Sawyer is a young soldier and fisherman. His military career has already taken him to 22 different countries and whether he is peace-keeping amongst the burning villages and mass graves of the Balkans or being attacked by hornets in the jungles of Malaysia, he always has a hook and line to hand.

In between soldiering duties, he slips away to fish. Often he meets locals by the river, and the common language of fishing cuts across the bloody backdrop of the war.

Nick Sawyer, grandson of the great Wiltshire riverkeeper Frank Sawyer, takes the reader on a fascinating trip to the heart of some of the terrible conflicts of the modern world - yet he also shows the humour and camaraderie of soldiering. It doesn't matter whether he is raiding a terrorist's house at dawn or dodging bullets in a grotty third-world street, there is always a humourous quip to make light of the situation.

He fishes for trout, huchen, kelah, mosquitofish, tilapia and sheatfish with nets, rods and traps. 'There are no half-measures when it comes to the dedication of a fisherman or a soldier,' he writes.

Author: Nick Sawyer
ISBN: 978 1 873674 77 2
Published: October 2004
No. of pages: 224
42 black & white photographs
2 black & white illustrations
Price: £6.75

Fishing on the Front Line by Nick Sawyer



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Press reviews

Reviewed in Shooting Gazette in November 2004

'The book cracks along at a fair pace and has a tempered mix of empirical detail and fascinating stories, which is enough to keep your imagination ‘hooked’ until the end.'


Reviewed in Trout & Salmon Magazine in December 2004

'This is a thoroughly enjoyable and painlessly instructive book for both angler and politician.'


Reviewed by Peter Lapsley of Flyfisher's Journal in December 2004

'An excellent and most worthwhile book – informative, entertaining and a thoroughly good read.'


Reviewed by Phil wilcox of Soldier Magazine in February 2005

'Whether you want to find out more about the potentially dangerous results of having too much curry in the jungle, the varied exploits of the likes of Togs, Bones, Ginger, Frenchy and Fireman Sam, or, indeed, the vagaries of fishing for luchen with Killer Bugs, read the book. You'll be hooked!'


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