EGAN, Van Gorman




Author Tags: Fishing

A Campbell River resident since 1954, Van Gorman Egan writes so carefully, so lovingly, do devotedly, about one-man fishing on the North Island, decades before the Island Highway was built, that itís easy to understand why artist Loucas Raptis offered to illustrate his next book, whatever it was. With encouragement from Mark Hume, the historian of the Tyee Club has turned his hand to revising four exquisite stories for Rivers of Return, in his trilogy that includes Rivers on My Mind and Rivers of Salt. Mainly sold to collectors of angling books, Van Gorman Eganís limited editions are not the least bit cumbersome in terms of technical language. His unpretentious and poetic prose is for those who appreciate the sophistication of simplicity. ďHe chose a Skykomish Sunrise on a No. 2 hook, cast it at the edge of the rough water and saw the current take it swiftly away, giving it no chance to go deep.Ē Having watched Campbell River expand from a village of 3,000 to a city of 28,000, Van Gorman Egan writes with an underlying nostalgia that flashes like a trout beneath surface. His painstaking reverence is easily a match for the better-known works of Roderick Haig-Brown. He sells his books from his home in Campbell River, very near to where Roderick Haig-Brown lived at Above Tide. No, heís not on the web. Van Gorman Egan has also written the history of the Tyee Club, founded in 1925, as a fundraiser for the Haig-Brown Kingfisher Creek Society.

BOOKS:

Tyee: The Story of the Tyee Club of British Columbia (Campbell River: Ptarmigan Press, 1988)
Waterside Reflections (Frank Amato Publications, 1996)
Rivers on My Mind (Riverside Publications, 1999)
Rivers of Return (Riverside Publications, 2003)
River of Salt (Riverside Publications, 2004). Illustrated by Loucas Raptis.

[BCBW 2004] "Fishing"