The author of Searching for Bobby Fischer tackles his own childhood in this “remarkably ambitious and satisfying memoir” (The New York Times Book Review).
Fred Waitzkin depicted the joys and trials of parenthood with remarkable perception in Searching for Bobby Fischer, the inspiration for the beloved major motion picture. A New York Times Notable Book, The Last Marlin is another sweeping family saga, the tale of an adolescence spent navigating between two very different parents and the discovery of a lifelong passion for deep-sea fishing.
Waitzkin’s father, Abe, is both a prolific salesman—the “Beethoven of fluorescent lighting” in the fifties—and a frail man, driven to succeed despite his declining health, while his mother, Stella, is an eccentric abstract artist, once a student of de Kooning and Hans Hoffman, and a free spirit who resents her husband’s dirty business tactics and conventional notions of success. As their relationship disintegrates, Waitzkin is torn between them.
But soon he finds solace on the ocean. At first, fishing is a way to bond with Abe—and irritate Stella—but over the years it becomes a way of life. From the Long Island Sound to the drug-infested coastline of Bimini and the marlin-rich waters of the Gulf Stream, Waitzkin comes to believe that fishing is the answer to all his problems, even as he starts his own family.
Hailed by Outside magazine as “a graceful father–son memoir that artfully braids rich, disparate strands,” The Last Marlin is a tribute to the open sea, the solitude it provides, and the connections it fosters.