Friday, April 24, 2009

Life at Full Draw: The Chuck Adams Story (Book Review)

First off I have to say that as a bowhunter, well really just a hunter in general, Chuck Adams is my biggest hero. For people in my age group Chuck Adams seems to be a direct offshoot of the late great Fred Bear. Chuck has his fair share of detractors but he has done a lot for the sport of bowhunting. This book has been something I’ve wanted to read for quite sometime but somehow I never got around to getting it. For Christmas of 2008 I made sure it was put at the top of my wish list! As soon as the book was in my hands I started in to it and was finished reading it in a few short days!

The theme of “Life at Full Draw: The Chuck Adams Story” to me is passion. Chuck has as much or more passion for hunting than anyone you’ll ever meet. He pours his heart and soul in to hunting and writing about hunting. He has sacrificed much to do what he loves but a man of such character and drive will do whatever it takes. The book takes you through all of Chuck’s life up until it’s printing in 2002. For those looking for hunting instruction this is probably not the book for you. Chuck has written more articles and books than I can count and they are full of great tips and insights in to hunting but this book is focused on Chuck the man. I did pick up a thing or two, and definitely some inspiration, but this is certainly not a how-to book. You are taken through the journey of the man’s life through childhood, young adulthood, and of course through his beginnings as a writer and through the animals of the Super Slam. There are some great hunting tales in the book but the most impressive thing to me is the extreme dedication that is shown by Chuck throughout his life. I think of myself as a pretty hardcore guy who will do what it takes to get the job done but I don’t know that I’m as dedicated or as mentally and physically tough as Chuck Adams is. I do however intend on finding out but that is a whole other story.

The book is well written and laid out in chronological order for the most part. Author Gregg Guschow does a pretty fair job of getting a private man to open up but there are times when the details are slightly vague. The book doesn’t hold anything back though and it does directly deal with a lot of the criticisms that Chuck has faced throughout the years. It spends a little too much time on the politics of hunting for me but even at that I found myself learning a few things. Everyone I’ve met in the hunting/outdoor industry has seemed to be genuinely nice and kind but you’ll see from reading this book that there is pettiness and jealousy everywhere. Chuck isn’t perfect though and I’m sure he’s brought some things on himself but it does show you that when you get to the top of any industry there will certainly be people gunning for you.

If you haven’t noticed, I really liked this book. As a matter of fact I’ve actually started reading it again. Chuck Adams is a hard driven, dedicated, passionate, bowhunter, and I think any hunter would enjoy reading the story of a man who did what it took to live out his dream of hunting full time. You will learn of the sacrifices that had to be made and the toughness that it takes. “Life at Full Draw: The Chuck Adams Story” is a great read and I doubt you will be disappointed!

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