Was advised to get this book to learn the basic techniques of fly tying. The book is brilliant and does exactly as claimed. Make sure you don't skip ahead as each successive pattern teaches you the new skills required for the later patterns. You might want to make a list of materials for each fly and buy in advance, as there seems to be an infinite mix of materials required and I live an hour from the nearest supplier. Couldn't recommend this book any higher as it has given me a solid foundation on which to develop my skills, and I need to work on that now :)
Charlie Craven's Basic Fly Tying The Orvis Fly Tying Guide Fly Tier's bench side reference
All three books arrived at different times based on shipping times. The first book to arrive was the Orvis book. I had expected more from Orvis and was a little disappointed with the book. The next to arrive was the Fly Tier's Bench side Reference; a big book it reminded me of a university science text in it's mass alone.
I found the Fly Tier's Bench side Reference to have loads of good pictures and hundreds of techniques but it was also a little overwhelming.
Last to arrive was Charlie's book and I must say I have been thoroughly impressed with this book. It is very well written. The author has very carefully dealt with what can be a very dry subject. He "talks" to you not down.
His book has very good photographs excellent descriptions and is laid out in a course format. Starting with simple skills and building on them you can very quickly get tying. As I have worked my way through the book I've felt like I've been attending one of his courses in person.
His book has now given me a greater appreciation of the Fly Tier's Reference book and I would recommend purchasing the two of these books together but being methodical in working your way through Charlie's book first book. The lessons taught by Charlie will add more value to the descriptions in the other book.