Cover image for All fishermen are liars : true tales from the Dry Dock bar
All fishermen are liars : true tales from the Dry Dock bar
Greenlaw, Linda, 1960-
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Hyperion, [2004]

Physical Description:
x, 228 pages ; 22 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
SH457 .G63 2004 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



Just before Christmas, Linda meets up with her best friend and fellow fisherman Alden Leeman for lunch and a drink at the Dry Dock, a well-worn watering hole in Portland, Maine. Alden, the captain of Linda's first fishing expedition, has seen his share of mishaps and adventures at sea. When Linda shares memories of navigating her ship through one of the craziest storms she's ever seen, Alden quickly follows up with his own tales. Then other fishermen, who are sitting on the periphery attentively listening, decide to weigh in with yarns of their own.

All Fishermen Are Liars brims with true stories of the most eccentric crew member, the funniest episode, the biggest fish, and the wildest night at sea. Denizens of the Dry Dock drift in and out as the bar begins to swell with rounds of drinks and tales that increase in drama. Here are some of the greatest fishing stories ever--all relayed by Linda Greenlaw in her inimitable style.

All Fishermen Are Liars will give readers what they have come to love and expect from Linda Greenlaw--luminous descriptions and edge-of-the-seat thrills. It's the perfect book for anyone who loves fishing and the sea.

Author Notes

Linda Greenlaw studied English and government at Colby College. During the summer after her freshman year, she became a cook and deckhand on the fishing boat Walter Leeman. She continued working on the boat during free time and vacations, and after graduating from college in 1983. She became a swordfish captain in 1986. She was featured in the book and film The Perfect Storm.

She has written several books including the nonfiction works The Hungry Ocean, The Lobster Chronicles, All Fishermen Are Liars, and Seaworthy: A Swordfish Boat Captain Returns to the Sea as well as a cookbook entitled Recipes from a Very Small Island and two mystery novels entitled Slipknot and Fisherman's Bend. She won the U.S. Maritime Literature Award in 2003 and the New England Book Award for nonfiction in 2004.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Greenlaw's third offering is once again ocean-bound. Although it may not be as gripping as The Hungry Ocean0 (1999), or depict a lifestyle change like The Lobster Chronicles 0 (2002), it is another entertaining excursion into a world few of us will ever know. It begins with a lunch date with her best friend and mentor, a man Greenlaw hopes to persuade to retire, that evolves into a day-long drinking and storytelling event. There is much variety in the tales told: some are funny, some tragic, and some hair-raising, and the storytellers are also diverse, as others in the bar join in. Interspersed between the tales tall and otherwise are bits of sea lore--labeled as "bar snacks"--that cover such subjects as the essentials of hiring a crew and frequent excuses for not catching any fish. A light and entertaining addition to Greenlaw's list and to salty sea stories in general. --Danise Hoover Copyright 2004 Booklist

Publisher's Weekly Review

The genesis of this lively collection of "absolutely true sea stories" is Greenlaw's (Lobster Chronicles) remembrance of an afternoon and evening spent with her crusty old friend Alden in a bar in Portland, Maine, trading tales about fishing and adventures at sea. Greenlaw, who makes her living as a commercial fisher, includes among the stories an account of how she nearly lost a boatload of 500 lobster traps the day she ignored the weatherman's storm warnings; the saga of being adrift at sea on a disabled fishing boat with a captain who was too cheap to pay for a tow; and a yarn about her chance meeting with a legendary dope-smuggling captain on the lam in the Caribbean. She also tells other people's stories, such as one about a fisherman who was forced to abandon his ship and managed to survive a night in the water during a hurricane. Alden chimes in with memories of the worst storm of his 40 years of commercial fishing. Two barflies join them. One tells of the young captain of a sightseeing vessel who almost lost the boat and 150 passengers during a storm, and the other contributes a whopper about landing a 200-pound tuna using rock-and-roll music as the lure. The stories are separated by short anecdotes about fishermen; Greenlaw calls these "bar snacks." At the end of the night, a woman of dubious character known as "the Madam" joins the group and declares, "All fishermen are liars." Greenlaw leaves it up to the reader to decide how much is truth and how much is exaggeration. Either way, the stories are all very entertaining. Agent, Stuart Krichevsky. (July) Forecast: Greenlaw has experienced great success with her two previous books, The Hungry Ocean and Lobster Chronicles, and this title should garner similar attention. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

This series of stories grows out of an afternoon, stretching into an evening, that Greenlaw spent with her longtime friend Alden Leeman at the Dry Dock, a heavily frequented drinking spot for fisher folk in Portland, ME. Leeman was the captain of the author's first fishing trip. From Greenlaw's recollections about steering a ship through a hellacious storm, Leeman counters with one of his own stories. Throughout the day they are joined by other fishers who add their own yarns and tales of prowess. Greenlaw's reading is perfect for these salty tales; her voice rings with the authenticity she brings as the first female swordship captain and peer of the guys at the Dry Dock. While All Fishermen Are Liars is not as riveting as her previous books (The Hungry Ocean and The Lobster Chronicles), Greenlaw's fans will still enjoy a few tall tales among friends. Recommended for public libraries.-Gloria Maxwell, Penn Valley Community Coll., Kansas City, MO (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.