©2007 Paul Torday; (P)2007 Orin Publiching Group Ltd.
A remarkably assured first novel, this one is a pure delight." (Booklist)
Before reading, I mean hearing this book, I'd never considered fly-fishing, but now....
The book is original, clever, and bitingly funny. Thoughtful, too. The elegant writing is matched by the reading and production. The readers/actors did a wonderful job of accents and expressions. I may listen to it again just for the pleasure of it.
This was my introduction to Paul Torday, taken up at the recommedation of a friend. I'm going to look for more of his work right now.
Salmon fishing in the Yemen is the tale of Afred, fishery academic, who is persuaded by Sheikh Mohammed of Yemen to concoct a plan to introduce salmon to the Yemeni waddy. Does that sound far-fetched? It is. But Torday's humor and style somehow hold it together. The story is told threw a procession of diary entries, memoranda, letters, newspaper editorials and parliamentary investigatory reports.
Alfred's wife is as cold as a Yemeni monsoon. He has a boss who knows nothing about fisheries. The boss is set on stealing credit for anything good that happens and pushing the blame for any thing bad on to someone else. It's full of bureaucratic double dealing.
I'm not sure of Salmon fishing in the Yemen's genre. Is it a comedy? Is it a farce? A love story? A nature tail? Torday's premiss is so wild the verges on science fiction.
The performance was excellent with the exception that some of the middle Eastern accents were a little too contrived. One would think they could get performers who actually have the accent.
Ultimately, Salmon Fshing in the Yemen is a story about belief that I couldn't quite believe. I couldn't willingly suspend my disbelief, but found the book to be a worthwhile listen because of it skillful lampooning a British Bureaucracy.
I've seen this movie about a dozen times. I love it. I had no idea how it compared to the book. And now that I do know, I'm eager to listen to the book again. At the base of either version is a great story of faith!
The narrators also did a great job with the characters.
Lovely, very British
Yes, combines humor, spirit, sorrow into a simply story. Unique.
I can't explain why I liked this book so much, but I did! Loved it and was sad to have it end. Whimsical yet very grounded. Had a few parts that dragged, but those parts helped tell the story.
I had wanted to read this before seeing the movie - enjoyed the performances! Held my interest well, good nuances and very expressive. Highly recommended.
I didn't like the premise of the book, valuable researchers' resource redirected to the pleasure of a man's desire to go fishing. The concept of "researchers working only in fear of losing their job", ordered by higher-ups to make the salmon fishing happen so that they can get rich, was personally appalling. I can't help but put myself in the story, and I would have to say that I don't enjoy living other people's frustration.
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