Salmon in the Seine

Now available wherever books are sold! Inquire at your favorite local independent book store.

Praise for Salmon in the Seine

My book Salmon in the Seine: Alaskan Memories of Life, Death, & Everything In-Between has been winning recognition! Left, it won Feathered Quill Book Award finalist in the two categories of Memoir and Debut Author (more here). Center, the book earned semi-finalist for the Chanticleer International Book Awards, Journey Awards for Creative Non-Fiction–this one is ongoing and finalists/overall winners to be announced (more here). Right, Salmon earned a 5-Star book review from Reader Views (here).

Brandon Mead, Consignment Buyer/Event Host at Third Place Books to The Seattle Times:It [Salmon in the Seine] reminds me of the endless places a human can go, the things they can see, and the stories they can tell if they commit to taking some risks. Everyday can be scary and challenging, but simultaneously magnificent, if you turn life into an adventure.” [Full The Seattle Times Article here]

Tim Schueler, Reader Views Reviewer: “…I’ve been reviewing books for a few years now and the first yardstick I use is whether, night after night, I want to keep picking up the book or not (as opposed to fulfilling the obligation of reviewing). I’m happy to report that it was the former; the details Comer provides about life on a working boat and the particulars of the lives of the fishermen (both on and off the water) were interesting and often quite entertaining. The story appealed: for instance, would a certain captain’s love of boxed wine lead to calamity? Would the narrator’s choice of work boots, different than his mates’, lead to problems?  In short, I was happy to pick up the book night after night.” [Full Reader Views 5-Star Book Review available here]

M.C. Armstrong, award-winning author of The Mysteries of Haditha:A gorgeous piece of work. Comer’s memoir taught me a lot about Alaska, fishing, and writing. Wild and kind, Salmon in the Seine is a book for anyone who has ever felt the pull of the wilderness. This coming-of-age story, like the landscape it describes, is out there on the old frontier, howling for a better America. Highly recommended.”

Osa Arnold-Schultz, Alaskan fisherperson and businesswoman:Through vivid descriptions and keen reflections, Comer brings to life a genuine Alaskan adventure. His story, real and relatable, captures his experiences in a way only a passionate writer can. Salmon in the Seine entertains while challenging us to look beyond the foreground.”

Rosemary McGuire, award-winning author of Cold Latitudes, Rough Crossing, and The Creatures at the Absolute Bottom of the Sea:Comer’s work stands out for the clarity, simplicity, and honesty with which he writes of Alaskan commercial fishing. There are truths that can only be learned by living them: the courage it can take just to set the net one more time in a bad season, the hard mornings, the bravery of the men and women who have chosen this life, and the unexpected moments of grace the sea can give. Comer knows this world, and writes of it with humility and compassion. This is a book to be kept, and lent to friends, and tucked into the pack of a young person heading out into the world for a first adventure, or propped against the wheelhouse window for moments of perspective. It is a book to remember.

I’m excited to share my debut memoir Salmon in the Seine with publisher Milspeak Books. The book is available wherever books are sold. Stay tuned and subscribe to my Substack e-newsletter below for updates.

I was 18 years old and fresh out of high school when I ventured north to Cordova, Alaska, in 2008 to kick off my Gap Year before college. What started as an aspiration to make good money and experience a proper seagoing adventure became reality aboard a highliner salmon purse seiner after pounding the docks. The ecstasy of big catches, camaraderie and budding romances, and Alaska’s epic embrace crash into tragedies like Exxon Valdez oil spill cultural trauma, a fatal cancer diagnosis, and life or death struggles at-sea.

Here is an American crossroads era both of exciting iPhones and black presidential candidate firsts, and looming Great Recession and working class troubles. Driven by a spiraling sense of existential chaos, I hit the Denali backcountry solo in search of wild wolves and some sense of meaning and purpose to it all.

From the back cover:

One moment eighteen-year-old Norris Comer is throwing his high school graduation cap in the air and setting off for Alaska to earn money, and the next he’s comforting a wounded commercial fisherman who’s desperate for the mercy of a rescue helicopter. From landlubber to deckhand, Comer’s harrowing adventures at sea and during a solo search in the Denali backcountry for wolves provide a transformative bridge from adolescence to adulthood.