Parents' Guide to

Down by the River: A Family Fly Fishing Story

By Regan McMahon, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 4+

Boy learns from his grandpa in warm family tale.

Down by the River: A Family Fly Fishing Story Poster Image

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This sweet, gentle fishing tale celebrates family and the power of shared memories. It's a quiet story that moves with the rhythms of the river and its calm pools. It acknowledges the boy's feelings of frustration and incompetence as he compares his skills with those of his mother and captures his joy at finally casting well and catching a fish. Mainly, his pleasure comes from being with family, hearing his grandpa's stories, and having a memorable day out in nature.

Down by the River also offers a basic introduction to fly fishing, and April Chu's illustrations convey its intricacies and intimacies from varying perspectives -- close up, far away, and from a soaring osprey's-eye view -- in an autumnal palette of green, orange, yellow, red. Back matter explains and illustrates fly fishing practices (such as "catch and release") and vocabulary, and endpapers showcase the diversity of flies crafted by humans to fool the fish.

Book Details

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