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Good Goldfish Books? Attn: Daryl


Hey! I remember you saying the other day that you collect goldfish books. I've been buying the ones I've seen (only about 4-5 of them) and am done reading them. At this point, the books I've read are very basic, and I'm finding that most of the things I've learned on here from you guys already!!! I always like to be ahead of myself, and am looking into getting a few books that go further than the basic. You know, that delve into diseases, medications, treatments etc. I want to learn more. I want to understand things like "gram negative bacteria", and different medicine names.. Right now the books I've read are more like "there are many fish diseases. Many need antibiotics. Ask someone which to use...". It doesn't have to be just disease but basically I am looking for a few good books that will teach me things beyond just rereading basic knowledge. I love to read (especially at the beach). I am going to buy the book that Rick was part of. There was also this really good book at the library that I want to try to find on ebay or something. It was older but was exactly the kind of book I am talking about. I think it was "goldfish guide" by Dr. Matsui & Dr. Axelrod. (I have two titles written down I think that was the one.) Any recommendations?? They don't have to be brand new either, I would be fine with something that I would have to track down on ebay, etc.

If ANYONE knows any I am interested. Not just from Daryl, I just directed the question to her because I remember her saying she collects them! Or even books that are more basic but just have something "better" about them. Thanks!!!

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Okay I just went fish crazy and bought like 6 books from amazon, including the Erik/Rick book! yay!!! Wanted to support GFC site but it's like $20 more on there so I just got it from Amazon. Yes Kristen that's the book!!! Have you read that one? It's very old but it seemed to be very detailed when it came to meds and stuff.. I'm gonna get it esp if it's THAT cheap!!

Today I was driving past one of the chain pet stores and it's closing down.. It's moving like 3 blocks up the street. I think normally they have larger stores, with fish, and this one was older and not big enough. EVERYTHING is on SALE!! EVERYTHING in the fish department is 30% off!! UGH! The filter I bought about a month ago would be $20 cheaper!!! And books were 60% off! Tanya, Taylor & I were actually out because we were going to the bookstore to find some fish books and on the way I saw the going out of business sign. I bought rabbit books, hermit crab books, dog books, cat books, fish books.. It was soo great and soooooo cheap!!!! Taylor was pulling me out of the aisles saying "mom come on.. the check out is THIS way.. let's go mommy. OHHH MOM! BETTAS!" lol I've got lots of new books, and some on the way.. I am gonna get the best tan EVER just laying out and reading! LOL Going back to the beach tomorrow too! : )

Daryl..... are you holding out on us????? : ) Trying to keep the good ones for yourself? lol

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What I learned over time is that most goldfish books out there are rather platonic and shallow, not going too much in depth of goldfish health beyond the basic stuff. Once you have seen one, you have seen them all. I wasted money buying every book insight, and after I started reading it didn't seem to be much different than the books I had read before that one.

Some books have stood out, however - Rick Hess' is one of them. Another one would be "Koi disease and health" by Doc Erik Johnson (you can see a picture of it in the classifieds section where I had mine for sale). One other one that comes highly recommended, but very hard to find is "Fish Disease And Diagnosis and treatment" by Edward J. Noga. If you ever find that one, you can consider yourself lucky. At a reasonable price, that is. It is the ultimate fish disease book, although not tailored completely to just goldfish alone.


One book I really love - and for me personally its more the aspect of the goldfish art behind it - is "Kingyo, the art of chinese goldfish" or something like that. Boy, if you ever want a book about goldfish pictures, art, paintings, whatever, this is the one! :heart

Oh duh, just trying to find the last one, and stumbled upon this wonderful review that Koko did a while ago. :rolleyes:


"Chinese Goldfish" from Tetra is also great, and I saw it just recently on Amazon and Alibris floating around.

Ken from Dandy Orandas also sells one - not a health book at all though. It's called "Atlas of Chinese Goldfish", and it goes more into the direction of the Kingyo book, with lots of goldfish varities and beauties, and if I remember right, it is mostly in chinese. But nonetheless, a top book to have - no reading allowed while sitting over the keyboard, or you can toss the keyboard away. :D

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I am sorry. I am not holding out on you. I am currently dealing with a grandchild in recovery from serious surgery. I am not home much.

I will be happy to post up the titles I have in my collection - and my opinions on most. I do not have all the titles in my head at this time, though.

One really good one that has not been mentioned here, before, though, is Joseph Smartt and James Bundell with "Goldfish Breeding and Genetics".... (I think that is how you spell Bundell....) That one is just chok FULL of really good info.

For fun, Peter Ponzio has a new little booklet out called "Spike" - a neat little booklet of goldfish care and other sundry info.... I have enjoyed it.

Uhhh..... I will have to check the shelf for other titles for acuracy, though.

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Guest Paradise-Panda


I own around 17 books on fish keeping in general and 5 centered specifically on goldfish. So far my Favorite for good accurate info is 'The Proper Care of Goldfish' by James Geran. I love this book because the auther seem to both be well informed and passionate for his hobby. 'Goldfish' by Bernice Brewster and Nick Fletcher is agood book for vivid photos of the different breeds but the basic info is severly lacking.

What are some of you guy's favorite books on the subject of goldfish keeping?

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Thanks Andrea!!! I am reading the book I got from you right now! And actually I thought about buying the other book from you but I thought "oh it's koi that wouldn't work for me". Now I am wishing I had just gotten it! : )

I went online the other night and bought some more. One of them was the one you mentioned I think "Chinese Goldfish". I also got Ricks. I did look for some of the books on the main koko's books page too. I honestly forget what I ordered at this point. I bought some new from amazon, and some used from amazon. I'll be looking around ebay and stuff for the books you recommended!!! The two you suggested with pictures/art etc. sound fun.

Thanks Daryl! Whenever you have time I would love to see a list of the books you have and your opinions on them.. lol I think I saw that Spike book on GFC... I was curious about that one actually.

I am sorry. I am not holding out on you. I am currently dealing with a grandchild in recovery from serious surgery. I am not home much.

Aww I know I was just messing with you. How is your grandson doing? Last update I saw he was doing well and the surgeries were a success.. I hope things are still getting better for him. : ) I can't imagine how scary it must be having to watch such a little guy through all of that. It must be so rough for you and the family.. I told you I would keep him in my prayers - I really have : )

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Guest Paradise-Panda


OMG I just posted about goldfish books! lol, I'm such a dork I didn't even notice this topic. My fave goldfish book so far is The proper care of Goldfish by Jean Geran. It's a little old but it's got some good info and nice pictures :)

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I'm still not sure because I am still waiting on a bunch of them to arrive : ) I saw your post on my thread so I came to read yours. Maybe the two of us will be bidding each other on ebay! lol

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Guest Paradise-Panda


lol, e-bay is awesome when it comes to book buying, I wouldn't be surprised if we did bid-fight for a book. Most of my books come from the Half Price Bookstore, but the two I got from ebay came free of that old people and beef jerkey smell the others had :)

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I bought that from amazon a few days ago and I can not WAIT til it gets here!!! I am excited every day waiting for the mail because I am expecting my goldy books! : )

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What I learned over time is that most goldfish books out there are rather platonic and shallow, not going too much in depth of goldfish health beyond the basic stuff. Once you have seen one, you have seen them all. I wasted money buying every book insight, and after I started reading it didn't seem to be much different than the books I had read before that one. Some books have stood out, however - Rick Hess' is one of them.

i agree completely with andrea. most books are general and not much to them. seems like the same books but by different authors. i used to have a huge collection of books on all types of fish but offed them years ago. i am now building them back up slowly again as i am back into the hobby. heres some books that i have, a good place to look is library sales too. thats where i got a couple of these as well as koi, marine, and pond/water garden books ($1 for hardbacks and $0.50 for paperbacks).

by spencer glass (great photos, general info, and a whopping 3/4 of a pg on breeding out of 64 pgs)


by paul paradise (awesome photos by fred rosenweig, general info, still a good book to have cause the pics)


by carlo devito with gregory skomal (general info, has minor info that others dont, decent)


by marshall e. ostrow (general info)


heres a couple of tropical ones that are informative

by david e. boruchowitz (packed with info, well put together book, some cool pics, a great book overall for trops)


by ulrich schliewen (great info for a small book, cr*ppy pics)


Edited by emptywallet
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I have alot of books so many I cant count them all, but the one that gets used the most is "Fancy Goldfish" its the best goldfish book out there :D

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Fancy Goldfish by Eric Johnson and Richard Hess is by far the best goldfish book I have ever read. Honestly, it is the only one I have ever seen that had useful material; but then again, you wouldn't expect anything less from these guys!

Here's the link:


I have alot of books so many I cant count them all, but the one that gets used the most is "Fancy Goldfish" its the best goldfish book out there :D

And based on these glowing recommendations, I just bought this book! I'm excitedly awaiting its arrival!

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  • Regular Member

Emptywallet, the Spencer Glass book was my very first goldfish book! I still have it around, simply because I love the pictures in it. I am looking into getting the Paul Paradise book.

For a bit out of the ordinary goldfish books, snoop around on the UK Ebay. British goldfish keepers/breeders are a whole other group as to how serious they take the hobby. They are very into detail with their fish keeping and showings, and some of those books are truely captivating and very interesting. They might not mention the meds and things we have around in the US, but otherwise are full of interesting fish keeping practises.

The Tetra book "Chinese Goldfish" I love because I can see the more simpler aspects of goldfish raising in Asia. Some of those very simple goldfish housings, containers and glass tanks are true works of art. No filters, and the tanks themselves have all kinds of metals surrounding the edges of the tank. Every now and then a tank like that pops up on ebay, but it goes up to astronomical prices pretty fast. :thud

A good hint as to how good/boring a book is - look at the quality of fish that is on the front cover. A goldfish that isn't up to standards, or a simple single tailed goldfish (no offense :D ), and the content of the book is just the same. Nice quality fish on the first two books you mention, Emptywallet. So-so on the third one, which can easily be found at most Pets*marts.

One other give-away: anything mentioning "Pet owner" is more of a general overview book with not much into details as to meds, breeding and diseases.

Plus, some authors attract more attention than others, simply because they are more knowledgeable of goldfish. Just a few to mention are Neil Teitler, William T. Innes (although older books, but I LOVE them!), Eric Johnson, Rick Hess, Man Shek Hay, Herbert Axelrod and so for.

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This is the Erik Johnson book. I have it and i use it constantly. It's my goldfish bible. Has all the treatments, surgical procedures, history, and all that other good stuff.


I got this book for Christmas and love it.

Now I'm really want that book, darn :krazy:

I just bought this book on Amazon. On Amazon, it was only $26.53, and that included shipping of $3.99. The regular price I've seen everywhere is $39 before tax, so that was a good deal. Of course, international shipping will be more; I think it was $12 something, but still that's less than the regular price before shipping.

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you wont be disappointed. Thats the book I always go to if I need help :D

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Guest Paradise-Panda


That book does look awesome! looks like my birthday wish list just got a new entry at the top! Fred Rosenweig also does all the pics for my currant fave book so I know the ones in Fancy goldfish have to rock :D

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Ladies, I have combined your two threads about the books - so we get a nice junk of goldfish book goodness! :thumbs:

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Thank you Andrea! : ) It's better having it all in this one thread!

Thanks everyone for all of your suggestions! Now I just have to figure out what I already own, what is ordered but hasn't arrived yet, and what I still need to hunt down!!

Got some mail today though!! Wooo hooo!!! How exciting! Now I get to bring out my OCD and make a list! : )

Okay these are the books I already had:

-Aquamaster Today's Essential Guide To Keeping Goldfish by Bernice Brewster & Nick Fletcher (average book, nice pictures!)

- Interpret Caring For Your Goldfish by Dr. David Sands (very much a beginner little pamphlet type book, I read this in 10 mins)

- Aqualog Special Goldfish & Fancy Goldfish by Karl-Heinz Bernhardt (still reading it, I like this one so far!! Thanks Andrea!)

- An Owner's Guide To A Happy Healthy Pet The Goldfish by Carlo Devito with Gregory Skomal (haven't read yet) (same one as emptywallet but mine has a different cover)

I also bought a bunch of books when they were on sale because of the store that is going out of business. I mentioned that somewhere on one of these threads lol They aren't goldfish only, but were 60% off so I got em. I haven't really looked at any of these yet.

- Freshwater Aquariums by David E.Borochowitz (Shown by Emptywallet)

- Freshwater Aquariums for Dummies (awww one made just for me! LOL)

- The Essential Freshwater Aquarium

- Animal Planet Freshwater Aquariums by David E Boruchowitz

- Animal Planet Freshwater Aquarium Problem Solver by David E Boruchowitz

Then since I have bettas I have got: (again all 60% off!)

- The Guide To Owning Bettas by Gene Wolfsheimer

- Bettas A Complete Introduction by Walt Maurus

- Bettas A Complete Pet Owners Manual from Barrons (I read this one and liked it!!!!)

- Animal Planet Aquarium Care Of Bettas by David E. Boruchowitz

And finally because of Chrissy Bee's beautiful guppies (also 60% off!)

- Animal Planet Aquarium Care of Fancy Guppies (by Stan Shubel)

THEN in the mail today I got:

- Goldfish Guide by Dr. Yoshiichi Matsui & Dr. Herbert R. Axelrod (this is the one that I saw in the library and Kristen showed me that I could get for 88 cents!! I splurged on my copy and got it for 99cents because it came from a good seller. It came in two days and although it's an old book I really liked it when I was skimming it in the library!! It is in REALLY good shape!!! It is seriously like new even though the book is old YAYAYAY

Then three new books from amazon:

-Tankmaster An Essential Guide to Keeping Goldfish by Bernice Brewster (looks to be pretty much the same book as the one with Nick Fletcher but different setup/pictures...

- Goldfish A Complete Pet Owner's Manual from Barrons (shown by EmptyWallet)

- Gold Medal Guide; Golden Tips For Keeping your First Goldfish by Amanda O'Neill (looks VERY VERY basic!!! Very short)

Still Coming:

- The Guide To Owning Goldfish by Spencer Glass (I assume it's different than the one you guys are talking about)

-Fancy Goldfish By Erik Johnson (hurry please!)

- The Essential Goldfish

-Quick & Easy Goldfish Care (super basic!!!!)

- Chinese Goldfish by Zhen Li

I also read part of the book you mentioned Paradise-Panda Proper Care of Goldfish' by James Geran while at the library the same day I found the Goldfish Guide book. I agree, it was old but was interesting.

My library had a copy of Goldfish & Koi in your home by Axelrod & Vorderwinkler. So i checked it out and read it at the beach the other day. It was pretty interesting to see some of the changes between then & now. You can tell that at the time this was probably a good book but just outdated in certain areas. It was still interesting to read. I just had to ignore the outdated false info. Such as a caption above one picture saying "This 20 gallon aquarium can be used for goldfish and koi. If the fish are small, this tank could handle as many as 20 fish"...

Now I am off to search for some of the others you guys have mentioned on ebay or amazon marketplace!! : )

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