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John Melfi

John Melfi is a trusts and estates lawyer practicing in Brooklyn.  John is a regular contributor to the saltwater fly fishing site www.flyfishbonehead.com, and he is the editor in chief of and contributor to its sibling online magazine, Tail Fly Fishing Magazine.

Author Articles

Book Review: "Fly Casting Finesse"A Complete Guide to Improving All Aspects of Your Casting

“Finesse casting” seems to be a pretty narrow discipline, conjuring scenes of #22 ants and spring creek trout. It is not a phrase that comes to mind when you’re tossing 8-inch poppers at 100-pound marlin. But this book uses the term “finesse” in an unexpected way; here the word conjures not just delicacy but “nuance” or “detail” or...

Book Review: Tosh Brown's "Top of the Flood"

The phrase “top of the flood” conjures a catastrophic event involving an ark, but Tosh Brown’s new book is not an end-of-days thriller. It is a contemplation of his half-life on the water. Top of the Flood is a breezy swoop through one person’s growth and maturation as a person and as an angler. There are funny stories, there are personal stories...

Book Review: "The New Scientific Angling"

If you like to fish and you know what nanometers are, you probably already own this book. If you just like to fish and don’t know a nanometer from your grandmother, you’ll benefit from getting it. Before this book, the effects of UV light on trout vision didn’t get much attention in the angling press. But a browse through current fly and gear catalogs...

Book Review: "Blood Knots"

There are scores of angling books that aren’t necessarily really about fishing, but that draw meaning from the experiences, thoughts, and observations that are peripheral to, though inseparable from, the act of fishing. The Old Man and the Sea may come to mind—its draw, such as it is, doesn’t come from the protagonist’s angling savvy or tactical...

Book Review: "Joan Wulff’s New Fly-Casting Techniques"

JOAN SALVATO WULFF needs no introduction, but I can’t resist pointing out that in 1960 she cast 161 feet with a fly outfit. That’s a whole standard trout line, plus a 9-foot leader, plus like 20 yards—yards—of running line. And she did it with bamboo. That’s crazy. Most good anglers with modern equipment would be pretty pleased to cast half that...

Book Review: "The Mayfly Guide"

TROUT ANGLERS owe Al Caucci a debt of gratitude. Just two examples of what he’s done for us: the Comparadun dry fly and the Hatches books (all created with the late Bob Nastasi). These contributions alone assure that Caucci’s and Nastasi’s names will be included on any short list of innovative and influential trout anglers. And now Caucci has put out...

Review: "Reading Waters"

Gary Borger’s reputation as a gifted angler and writer is pretty much set in stone. He’s an observant and canny (maybe even uncanny) fisherman, and he’s been well-tutored by a lifetime on the water. Anything he puts his hand to is worth investigating. I’ve been reading Borger’s work for 20-odd years, and I haven’t read anything of his that is as...

Review: "The Blitz: Fly Fishing the Atlantic Migration"

A WWII-BUFF FRIEND of mine, who doesn’t fish, bought this book sight unseen and was disappointed to discover that it doesn’t even mention the Luftwaffe’s 1940-1941 bombing of Britain. I had the benefit of reading the subtitle, so I was pretty sure that it wasn’t going to be a history of the WWII Blitz or, for that matter, a nostalgic nod to the...