The author of the new book Looking Through Water has pledged to donate the novel’s proceeds to a veterans organization dedicated to the physical and emotional rehabilitation of disabled service members and veterans through fly fishing.
Author Bob Rich Jr. said Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing, Inc. was the natural choice for his book’s proceeds.
“A main theme in Looking Through Water is getting out into nature to confront challenges and ultimately see them as opportunities. For me, the open water has been very transformative so I thought it would be very fitting to partner with Project Healing Waters,” he said.
Since 2005 Project Healing Waters has been providing basic fly fishing, fly casting, fly tying and rod building classes, along with fishing trips to wounded service members and disabled veterans. Participants include people who have never fished before to those who are “adapting their skills to their new abilities.” Project Healing Waters provides all the fly fishing and tying equipment and fishing trips to participants at no cost.
Project Healing Waters is “much more than a one day fishing trip,” according to the organization’s website.
“For many participants, particularly disabled veterans, the socialization and camaraderie of the classes are just as important as the fishing outings, and provide them a new activity,” Project Healing Waters said.
Bonding while fishing is a theme in the novel Looking Through Water.
Looking Through Water is a multi-generational look at family relationships, told by a grandfather to his grandson during a fishing expedition.
“Fishing is frustration and heartbreak set amidst incredible beauty that for me is a fitting analogy for life and our closest relationships. The small numbers of people on a fishing boat —two or three at a time—naturally lends itself to more personal conversations. A lot of veneers are stripped, and you find yourself sharing information that you might not have on land,” Rich said.
The suspenseful novel starts on an Adirondacks lake and wends its way through Manhattan to the Florida Keys. Its main character, William McKay is neither a sinner nor a saint. He is just a man trying to make sense of his life, Rich said.
“He never set out to be a teacher, but was thrust into the role during which time he taught and learned as well. It’s an adventure story and a love story with a hopeful ending,” Rich said.
“The novel covers five generations in a very short time, and the reader will get drawn into the characters as they lose their way and ultimately find a path back to redemption. A grandson becomes a grandfather and reaches back into his past to share with his troubled grandson the events of a week that would forever change the man’s life,” Rich said.
Looking Through Water is Rich’s fifth book and first novel.
He decided to donate the book’s proceeds to veterans in honor of his father’s memory.
“In his role as Milk Administrator, Rich Sr., learned of successful research using the soybean to create a non-dairy milk alternative. That idea spurred his entrepreneurial vision that led to the ultimate founding of our company in 1945,” he said.
Rich served in the United States National Guard from 1963 to 1969 and was a member of the Army Reserve Officer School Staff. His family’s company, Rich Products, recently team up with Pizza 4 Patriots to get pizza delivered for troops serving abroad.
“We are so pleased to give back to our servicemen and servicewomen who sacrifice so much for all of us,” he said.