The "Yes Minister" comparisons are justified (and there is some brilliant, hilarious political and bureaucratic satire here), but at its heart, this is the story of a hen-pecked, slightly pompous, middle-aged scientist who finds himself caught up in what seems like an impossible project, and of how this project changes his life. In the process, he becomes an unlikely and rather loveable hero, discovers true love for himself, finds himself both a pawn and then a victim of political spin, leaves his brilliantly horrible wife, and learns to believe in the impossible. And he takes the listener with him in the process.
©2007 Paul Torday; (P)2007 Orion Publishing Group Ltd.
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"Much better than the film"
This is a thoroughly enjoyable rendition af the book, well narrated and far more satisfying than the film. In fact the book and the film are quite different beasts and the film ending is typical pop film stuff and was obviously rewritten by the script writers, which I think is a shame as Torday's ending and story is far stronger.
I kept listening because I had heard good reviews but it was a bit repetitive for me. I finished and was glad I did as the book is out of my usual genre. Funny and human.
My wife and I listened to this book on a long car journey in France. I normally find driving long distances very tedious. However this book made the whole journey a real delight. We did not want the journey or the book to come to an end. It has everything, romance,drama,comedy and politics. My wife does not normally listen to books and prefers the classics but even she was taken with this story and the presentation. One piece of advice - do not see the film before listening to the book it will spoil the story.
"Don't rent the film - listen to this!"
Luckily I listened to this book before watching the dvd, the film is OK where it remains true to the plot but it veers off with a Hollywood happy ending which frankly is an insult to the author who put this great plot together. It's done in such an innovative style, expressed as it is in a mixture of emails, memos, reports, letters. It's brilliant.
"Much more complex than the film"
What a wonderful and enviable imagination Paul Torday has and what a magical and fascinating book. This book should not be rejected as a book about fishing! Important as this is in the story, it is far more complex and deep and has much to teach us about relationships and about human endeavour.
The setting of the book is probably unfamiliar to most readers but Paul Torday is able to take us from London to Scotland to the Yemen so that we can see these places.
The characters were both funny and desperately serious and sometimes sad - a great skill shown by the author to sketch the characters so well.
This book did translate well to film but I'm very pleased that I read it before seeing it.
"Funny, wise and human, all in one"
I confess that I'd not heard of this book and picked it up because of its quirky name. As an audiobook, it delighted me. I loved the narration, enjoyed the structure of the book and the way it moved from character to character. It made me smile a great deal, laugh out loud on a few occasions and dab away a tear towards the end.
Who could ask for more?
"Absorbing and entertaining"
I initially resisted this title because I tend to want to discover books by myself and avoid those that are hyped or that "everyone's reading". How wrong I was - this story is warm and engaging, and totally deserves the hype and the "everyone's reading" it status.
I enjoyed the fact that the main character Fred Jones wasn't your archetypal hero, more of a Mr Average who actually doesn't do anything extraordinary, but who is so likeable. The letters, emails, diary entries and reports that make up the narrative felt surprisingly inventive and absorbing. The comedy and satire of the surface reading are under-pinned by thought-provoking themes of loss, faith, and failure.
Lots to enjoy, and a recommended audiobook.
"Book versus Film"
Read the book first then went to see the film!
Film had a different fairy tale ending - not so in the book!
Quite interesting twist on the political side !
Not an all time great but good fun to read
"very enjoyable and engaging"
Really enjoyed this book. Gentle and engaging. Listened to it on holiday. Interesting and relaxing
"A jolly good listen !"
I really am enjoying listening to Salmon Fishing in the Yemen , I love the story and I love the way it is read and clearly I like the way it is written with a mixture of notes to diary,emails etc.It is not depressing at all in fact I think uplifting is the word I would use . All you need is a bit of faith.....Enjoy , I certainly did.
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