Must-Read Books for Deer Hunters

By Brodie SwisherJanuary 19, 2024

With all the good that comes with modern technology these days, you’ll also find plenty of old-school styles, traditions, and techniques being kicked to the curb. There’s endless entertainment found in the smartphone sitting in your hand. But the downside is that many of the classic reading materials of days gone by go unnoticed. 

It seems like few people read books anymore these days. But, if you’re looking to break the norm and get back to the basics of life with a good book, we’ve got a list for you! Whether you’re sitting in the deer blind, or kicked back in the recliner, here’s a look at some must-read books for deer hunters. 

Bowhunting Public Land Whitetails

Must Read Books For Deer Hunters

Our good buddy, Tony Peterson wrote the book, Bowhunting Public Land Whitetails. It’s become the go-to resource for real-world hunting information. Tony J. Peterson has carved a name for himself in the bowhunting industry by focusing his efforts on common-ground whitetails. He’s one of the most consistent deer hunters out there. He’s a true stone cold killer in the deer woods. Throughout this comprehensive book you’ll read about Peterson’s detailed scouting strategies, his top gear choices, and how he plans and executes hunts on public land throughout the country each fall.  

Price $12.99

Mapping Trophy Bucks

Must Read Books For Deer Hunters

Mapping out a plan for killing a buck is one of the hottest techniques utilized by hunters these days. Brad Herndon takes you back to the basics and helps take the mystery out of finding deer with maps. Through years of dedicated hunting and careful study of maps and photos, Herndon has perfected the use of maps to find the routes deer travel. And once you know where the deer will be headed you can establish the perfect ambush site. Maps are often the forgotten link in scouting prime deer habitat. Yet because they show you all the hills, gullies, rivers, and ridges, you can learn the lay of the land without walking mile after unproductive mile. Maps won’t eliminate the need to get in the woods, but they will tell the best places to start your search for the buck of your dreams.

Price $34.95

Giant Whitetails: A Lifetime of Lessons

Must Read Books For Deer Hunters

Mark and Terry Drury are living legends when it comes to hunting giant whitetail bucks. They’ve literally written the book on it. And their reputation for being open and honest about their strategies and techniques comes through in this book every deer hunter will enjoy. From how to hunt rare October cold fronts and utilizing ultimate deer funnels, to hunting mature bucks in their own bedroom. Giant Whitetails discloses revealing facts on consistently harvesting trophy bucks. The Drurys share observation tactics and tips for hunting by the moon, as well as methods for successful ground hunting, non-intrusive hunting, and using rattling antlers effectively. Comprised of 10 individual accounts of hunting trophy bucks from start to finish, each chapter tells a new awe-inspiring story, and for the reader’s benefit, finishes with a “lessons learned” section.

Price – $19.99

Whitetail Savvy

Must Read Books For Deer Hunters

Renowned wildlife author and photographer, Dr. Leonard Lee Rue III shares his lifelong research, shining insight on many of the whitetail behaviors you never knew existed. Blending unrivaled knowledge, scientific research, and personal anecdotes and observations with over 250 astounding photographs, Rue brings to life the secret world of the whitetails. From the classifications of the Cervidae family to field dressing a deer, from the science behind tree rubs to the number of spots on a fawn’s coat, Rue explains every conceivable aspect of these popular and spirited large mammals. This book is a must for anyone interested in whitetails: nature buffs, deer lovers, deer haters, wildlife managers, homeowners, photographers, highway troopers, and—not least—deer hunters.

Price – $29.99

With Dad On A Deer Stand

Must Read Books For Deer Hunters

Good friend, and best-selling author and hunting enthusiast, Steve Chapman (A Look at Life from a Deer Stand) takes readers to the woods to experience the thrill of the hunt and the joy of spending one-on-one time with their children. Through heart-tugging adventures of fathers with their sons and daughters, readers will discover the powerful bond hunting together forges, life-changing insights, and the ways hunting skills can help a child achieve success. 

Price – $4.35

The Old Man and the Tree

Must Read Books For Deer Hunters

Few hunters tell a tale like the Wensel brothers. The Old Man and the Tree is a collection of lessons learned from a lifetime in the woods. Barry Wensel shares his philosophies, strategies, and hunting techniques that have been so successful for him all these years. Barry mixes stories of big bucks with observations on stand locations, ground hunting, spotting game and deer behavior.

Price – $40

Aggressive Whitetail Hunting

Must Read Books For Deer Hunters

Shots at Whitetails

Must Read Books For Deer Hunters

If you’re looking for whitetail classic, you’ll want to check out Shots at Whitetails. It was born in 1948 by Lawrence R. Koller to give insights into his deer hunting expertise and his well-crafted writing style. The book was republished for the first time in 1970 but has not been reprinted since 1975. You’ll find never-before-seen photos of Larry Koller’s New York hunting club and the members who still carry on the camp’s rich traditions, timeless tips on shooting, tracking, buck fever, still-hunting, deer-camp etiquette and more. It delivers an old-school instruction for sighting in, minor gunsmithing, tanning hides, scoring your buck, venison aging, and cooking, deer hunting terminology, deer-herd management and old deer rifles. It’s an entertaining way to relive deer hunting and camp life in an era unknown to most of today’s hunters.

Price – $27.95

How to Bag the Biggest Buck of Your Life

Must Read Books For Deer Hunters

If you’re looking for a nostalgic deer hunting classic, look no further than Larry Benoit’s How to Bag the Biggest Buck of Your Life. Benoit had spent decades tracking and taking deer in the mountains of northern Vermont before he set down his first word about hunting, and the result was an instant classic. He was a tracker in the old sense of the word, a smart hunter who worked hard for his trophies. He didn’t sit on stumps, waiting for a deer to wander by, and he didn’t cruise back roads in a car – he hunted.

In How to Bag the Biggest Buck of Your Life, he shows how. Chapters include getting fit for the chase, learning to read tracks, advice on clothing and equipment, how to handle a rifle, and how to field dress and butcher your buck. Interspersed are anecdotes from his long career, including the saga of a 13-day pursuit of a savvy, 230-pound buck with 25-inch antlers. It’s a book for the hunter just learning to love the woods, and it’s a book for the old hand who wants to spend some time with one of the most experienced hunters ever to walk the northern forests. It’s one of the gems of hunting literature.

Price – $14 

Bowhunting Pressured Whitetails

Must Read Books For Deer Hunters

Back in the early 2000’s, John and Chris Eberhart delivered a book many hunters have come to love on the subject of hunting high-pressured bucks. Bowhunting Pressured Whitetails will give you insight on how to scout and prepare sites while leaving minimal evidence of human presence, and how to read deer sign to find the most productive places to hunt. You’ll find comprehensive coverage of scent control, including the use of odor-eliminating clothing. The book covers everything the hunter needs to know to take mature bucks in areas where hunting pressure has increased a deer’s wariness and ability to evade hunters. 

Price – $18.04

What about you? What are your favorite books on deer hunting? What books do we need to add to our list? 

Comment below, and let us know what you think. 

Brodie Swisher
Brodie Swisher is a world champion game caller, outdoor writer, seminar speaker and Editor for Bowhunting.com. Brodie and his family live in the Kentucky Lake area of west Tennessee.
Post a Comment
Login To Account

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *