Chris High reviews Paul Torday


 


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Chris High reviews a book Salmon Fishing In The Yemen.

Paul Torday


Salmon Fishing In The Yemen


Publisher: Weidenfeld & Nicholson
ISBN: 978-0-297-85158-5
February, 2007

Front cover of the book by Paul Torday - Salmon Fishing In The Yemen

SALMON FISHING IN
THE YEMEN
written by
PAUL TORDAY


Okay, let’s not mince words here. Paul Torday’s debut novel Salmon Fishing In The Yemen is an extraordinary book in every aspect of the term. What else would you expect from a work that includes love, political spin, dirty tricks and the overpowering belief that nothing is impossible.

Indeed, belief is the optimum force in this tale – or maybe that should be “tail” – of triumph over adversity.

 


This is the story of Dr Alfred Jones, a fisheries scientist - for whom diary notable events include the acquisition of a new electric toothbrush and getting his article on caddis fly larvae published in 'Trout and Salmon' - who finds himself reluctantly involved in a project to bring salmon fishing to the Highlands of the Yemen ... a project that will change his life, and the course of British political history forever.

With a wickedly wonderful cast of characters - including a visionary Sheikh, a weasely spin doctor, Fred's devilish wife and a few thousand transplanted salmon - Salmon Fishing in the Yemen is a novel about hypocrisy and bureaucracy, dreams and deniability, and the transforming power of faith and love.

This is Adrian Mole with attitude and so well drawn are the characters, it is impossible not to believe that all of them – and especially the wonderfully self-serving politicians – are drawn from real-life bureaucrats. The situations in which the protagonists find themselves – as reported by diary listings, E-mails and interim reports – are both laugh-out-loud funny and deeply moving but which never descend into the farcical and so manages to leave the credibility of the plot intact.

To quote actor Bill Nighy, who supplied a blurb for the novel: “I really loved this book”, mostly, for its freshness, its originality and fort its ability to make the reader truly believe that anything – absolutely anything – can be achieved if we only set our minds to it.
9/10

Read Extracts: www.salmonfishingintheyemen.co.uk

Salmon Fishing In The Yemen will feature on BBC Radio 4 as The Book At Bedtime.

Order this book online - Linghams Booksellers


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“Writing gets me away for a while' from this world and into one where I, alone, can make or
break the rules as I see fit.” - Chris High 2003.
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