There is a hunting story that goes back in time to the very beginning of human language. For people who love reading, there are now apps like Audible that can help you find books, and a Kindle that lets you read them. Hunters know that stories are all over the world, and most of them make up their own. They also tell their own stories. It’s easy to search the web and find a whole lot of hunting books at the top. And those books about hunting are often fun, educational, and important, so they are worth reading.
Many books that tell stories about hunting don’t call them “hunting books,” but they do tell stories about hunting. Possibly, it’s a well-known wine and bird dog lover reminiscing about his life. You might hear stories of people who have almost died while out in the woods. These stories will both shock and teach you as you go out into the woods. Also, it could be a 1984 trip into the Arctic, where a writer walks around with natives, both animal and human, to learn about their way of life there. Or it could just be a collection of old, tried-and-true hunting stories that everyone can enjoy. The people who walk the line and tell the stories are some of my favorite. These are some of the best hunting books, and I hope you find some new ones to love.
Best Hunting Books
‘Campfire Stories: Close Calls‘ by Steven Rinella & Contributors
My favorite hunting book of 2021 wasn’t a hunting book at all. It was an audiobook experience put together by the MeatEater team and Audible. When Rinella was filming a MeatEater episode, a brown bear attacked her. She wants people to share their near-death stories, which both chill and entertain.
From bear attacks to backcountry falls to a harrowing escape from hypothermia, there are many stories about how people got out of trouble. As if you were listening to a very well-made, short podcast about different things from different people. It’s fun to listen to.
I don’t think you’ll be able to put one of these stories in the middle to listen to later. The moment you join, you’re in it.
‘The Hunter’s Game: Poachers and Conservationists in Twentieth-Century America‘ by Louis S. Warren
If you’re a history nerd like me, “The Hunter’s Game” will help you learn more about hunting in the United States. Historian Louis S. Warren tells stories that, even though they can be complicated at times, are very different from the stories I’ve heard about conservation in the United States.
There was a rise in the number of people who wanted to hunt for sport, which made it hard for wildlife management to keep up with them. And the stories he talks about in Pennsylvania, New Mexico, and Montana show that being a conservationist in modern-day America isn’t always as simple as it seems.
If you’re a hunter or a fan of wildlife, this is a book you should read.
‘Traplines: Coming Home to Sawtooth Valley‘ by John Rember
When I was outside of Glacier National Park, I found “Traplines” on the back of a shelf in the Polebridge Mercantile. That weekend, it was a big hit. It quickly became a favorite.
Author John Rember tells the story of how he lived in Idaho’s Sawtooth Valley for a lot of his adult life. This is how it works: He talks about the history of Sawtooth Valley and how salmon are dying. He talks about how he learned to hunt with his father, and more.
‘The Last Wild Road: Adventures and Essays from a Sporting Life‘ by T. Edward Nickens
- Edward Nickens is one of the most prolific hunters we know, and his work as a journalist and editor-at-large for Field &
Stream is shown in this collection of stories from 2021.
Nickens’ stories are funny, poignant, and sometimes heartbreaking. They cover a wide range. But they always meet on the side of hunting, where people connect with nature in new and sometimes surprising ways.
Nickens likes to go to Pennsylvania, where he meets and talks with two brothers who lost their father in a hunting accident many years ago. What does happen now? Find out by reading.
‘American Serengeti: The Last Big Animals of the Great Plains‘ by Dan Flores
For people who fly over middle America and wonder what this place looked like before we put “for sale” signs and white picket fences on everything, this is the book to read. A master storyteller and writer called Flores talks about the wild history of the Great Plains. He is also very good at telling stories. This isn’t all: He also talks about how the wildlife that lives there has fared since people started living on the plains.
Make sure you have this book in your hands if you want to hunt a bison or pronghorn. It will help you understand what they’re going through.
‘That Wild Country: An Epic Journey through the Past, Present, and Future of America’s Public Lands‘ by Mark Kenyon
Mark Kenyon’s “That Wild Country” is the MeatEater group’s new book. It’s well known that Kenyon is a big name in whitetail hunting, and he’s one of the best podcasters in the outdoor genre with his show Wired To Hunt. But he’s also a writer in the outdoor world, so he has a lot of different jobs.
When he starts writing, he writes a book that celebrates his time on public land and also talks about the history, politics, and possible future of our natural resources. You can read this book whether you are a hunter or a fisherman, and it will be very relevant to both.
It’s also a good buy if you own a Kindle, because you can get it for free with Kindle Unlimited or pay $2 for it without.
‘Beyond Fair Chase: The Ethic and Tradition of Hunting‘ by Jim Posewitz
Beginners can start with this small but powerful book, which talks about how to be a good hunter. “Beyond Fair Chase” is often given out as part of hunter education classes. It gives the reader an idea of what it means to be an ethical hunter.
With over 2 million copies sold, the book has been around for 27 years. At just $6, it’s cheap and a good gift for a new or soon-to-be hunter. It’s not just a dry book about ethics. When Posewitz talks about how to be a fair-chase hunter, he tells stories and anecdotes about how to do that.
It’s also a good book for people who have been hunting for a long time to read again, because it gives them a chance to think about what fair chase means to them and why they go hunting in the first place.
Before you read “Beyond Fair Chase,” you should read this book:
‘H Is for Hawk‘ by Helen McDonald
This is a beautiful book about a relationship between two different kinds of animals and a hunter from the past. McDonald weaves her way through death and relationships as she learns how to hunt and train with a goshawk.
The writing in this book is both beautiful and clear, and it won a lot of awards. If you haven’t read it, you should. It’s a great book, and both the paperback and Kindle editions are less than $6 for each one.