Published Feb 29. 2024 - 1 month ago
Updated or edited Feb 29. 2024

Book review: Fly tying

12 saltwater flies that catch fish!

Fly tying really makes beautiful books! 12 saltwater flies that catch fish!

Morten "Coastfly" Hansen
Independently published (through Amazon)
Publishing year: 
Reviewed by: 

When I opened the book for the first time, I went wow! I had the same reaction when I opened the book “The Tube Fly” by Ken Sawada and said to myself “Fly tying really makes beautiful books!”

When I opened the book for the first time, I went wow!

Already the cover is enticing with this magnificent photo of the Glass-Shrimp, a creation by the author inspired by the Magic Shrimp from Danish Rune Westphal. The back cover features the 12 flies described in the book. Between these covers, 94 pages of good quality color photos. Flies are grouped into 3 groups: Shrimp, Hackle Flies and Baitfish Flies. Each section has a presentation text.

The flies are all covered in the same way, starting with a single color of paper. There are 12 flies, and therefore 12 colors of paper. Each of the flies has a presentation page followed by the list of required materials for tying. At the bottom of this page there is a QR code that takes you to an tying video on YouTube. This way of doing things is very interesting since it makes the book more dynamic in a certain way in addition to offering details that can help the tyer. Next follows 3 to 5 pages of color photos - 6 photos per page - demonstrating the tying step by step. Let's add an introduction page to the book, a thank you note at the end, and atmospheric photos which take up a few pages.

To be frank, I would have liked to read more from this author who seems to have good fishing experience. For example, how does he work with his shrimp or baitfish flies? When does he use them?

But hey, you have to see Fly Tying 12 Saltwater Flies That Catch Fish! as a beautiful fly tying book in which the text plays a minor role compared to the real stars, which are the photos.

back and front
Back and front
Morten Hansen

Why make a book if you already have all the tutorials on YouTube? Good question! Personally I like it, especially since he is not the first to use this strategy. Barry Old Clarke used it in his recent book, and others have too. For a reasonable price of US$ 42, you get a quality book that will look great in your library and contains a dozen very well-done tutorials.

Personally, I am a follower of Morten “Coastfly” Hansen on social media, and I like his simple, effective and aesthetic approach. The 12 flies he offers in his book are enough, and will help me catch more striped bass and sea trout, I'm sure. Sometime, less is better, that’s the case here.


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