Let me just apologise for the slightly late FP - I installed a new battery in my laptop last night, and there was some semi-occult-best-performed-at-full-moon calibration cycle to go through in order for the laptop to correctly show battery status. I just needed to finish that.
So why do I like Jason's new book? Becasue it's the best - ever. Have a great weekend, folks :-).
OK - so there's more to, of course, and I'll elaborate a little.
First of all - this is the work of one man - from A to Z. The book represents Jason's own approach to understanding and teaching casting, he wrote it, he shot the footage that is the basis for the (quite simply excellent) linedrawings that go with each explanation, he did the layout, he oversaw the print (no no, he did crank the handle on the press) and he's done all the mailing himself too. I do believe he even did all the accounting and invoicing himself too... Just think about that for a moment. Anyone who's ever written anything will be able to appreciate what an enourmous task this has been (and as if it wasn't enough, I saw on Jason's Facebook page the other day that he's already diving into the next book).
But being impressed by the work-load is one thing - it has to result in quality, of course - otherwise it's just a waste of time. And then we're back at that slightly pompous statement above: It's the best... That's of course a matter of opinion, and I haven't read all the books on this subject, but I read a good deal, and I've never read anything that's a clean, concise and precise as this.
The casts are explained using Jason's own "modular approach", which I really like. Each element of a cast is broken down as much as it makes sense, and then each element is represented as a module (graphically a "box" in the book that links to other modules/boxes). Any cast can then be explained, visualised and broken down into a number of modules (depending on the cast). This is an approach I really like to use, both when training and teaching.
Each cast is of course also explained in detailed text (yet, concise and precise) and when ever applicable, you'll find "Helpers and adjustments", for instance, you'll find lots of real-use explanations for the casts (for instance using an across-the-head cast to keep your size 2 Wooly Bugger away from your guides head - although Jason seems to know guides who just love having those zip past their heads - I don't know any of them :-).
The illustrations are worth a review entirely of their own. They're simple line drawings, based on video footage of Jason himself performing the casts. They're really excellent and serve to emphasize which ever detail or element much clearer that a photo could have done.
All in all I do think this is a excellent book, and if you like fly casting, if you're working on yours, if you're an instructor ot training to be one, then I recommend this book. You need one, and if want another book, get a second copy and stash it in a vault :-).
I know there are still copies to be had, I don't know how many, and but I know the print run was 1001 copies, so they won't last forever. Get in touch with Jason here to order a copy.
So - if you find yourself "left in a place that's full of movement with speed, but not much in the way of mental and physical direction", this book will help you find a path!
Have a great weekend!