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The Gospel of the Eels: A Father, a Son and the World's Most Enigmatic Fish

The Gospel of the Eels: A Father, a Son and the World's Most Enigmatic Fish (Paperback)

By Svensson, Patrik
Translated by Broome, Agnes

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I can't recall us ever talking about anything other than eels and how to best catch them, down there by the stream. Actually, I can't remember us speaking at all. Maybe because we never did.' The European eel, Anguilla anguilla, is one of the strangest creatures nature ever creat...ed. Remarkably little is known about the eel, even today. What we do know is that it's born as a tiny willow-leaf shaped larva in the Sargasso Sea, travels on the ocean currents toward the coasts of Europe - a journey of about four thousand miles that takes at least two years. Upon arrival, it transforms itself into a glass eel and then into a yellow eel before it wanders up into fresh water. It lives a solitary life, hiding from both light and science, for ten, twenty, fifty years, before migrating back to the sea in the autumn, morphing into a silver eel and swimming all the way back to the Sargasso Sea, where it breeds and dies. And yet . . . There is still so much we don't know about eels. No human has ever seen eels reproduce; no one can give a complete account of the eel's metamorphoses or say why they are born and die in the Sargasso Sea; no human has even seen a mature eel in the Sargasso Sea. Ever. And now the eel is disappearing, and we don't know exactly why. What we do know is that eels and their mysterious lives captivate us. This is the basis for The Gospel of the Eels, Patrik Svensson's quite unique natural science memoir; his ongoing fascination with this secretive fish, but also the equally perplexing and often murky relationship he shared with his father, whose only passion in life was fishing for this obscure creature. Through the exploration of eels in literature (Gunter Grass and Graham Swift feature, amongst others) and the history of science (we learn about Aristotle's and Sigmund Freud's complicated relationships with eels) as well as modern marine biology (Rachel Carson and others) we get to know this peculiar animal. In this exploration, we also learn about the human condition, life and death, through natural science and nature writing at its very best. As Patrik Svensson concludes: 'by writing about eels, I have in some ways found my way home again.
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ISBN 9781529030709
Released NZ 28 Sep 2021
Publisher Pan Macmillan
Format Paperback
Alternate Format(s) View All (2 other possible title(s) available)
Availability
Indent title (internationally sourced), allow 8-12 weeks

Full details for this title

ISBN-13 9781529030709
Stock Available
Status Indent title (internationally sourced), allow 8-12 weeks
Publisher Pan Macmillan
Imprint Picador
Released 28 Sep 2021
Publication Country United Kingdom United Kingdom
Format Paperback
 › 2 other possible formats available
Author(s) By Svensson, Patrik
Translated by Broome, Agnes
Category Biography & Autobiography
Biography & Autobiography: Literary
Animals & Society
Family & Other Relationships: General
Coping With Death & Bereavement
Fishing, Angling
Number of Pages 256
Dimensions Width: 132mm
Height: 197mm
Spine: 18mm
Dewey Code 597.432
Weight 194g
Interest Age 18+ years
Reading Age 18+ years
Library of Congress Anguilla anguilla, Eel fishing, Fathers and sons - Sweden
NBS Text Autobiography: Literary
ONIX Text General/trade;College/higher education;Professional and scholarly

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