All Creatures Great and Small

All Creatures Great and Small

Book - 1975
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The classic multimillion copy bestseller
Delve into the magical, unforgettable world of James Herriot, the world's most beloved veterinarian, and his menagerie of heartwarming, funny, and tragic animal patients.
For over forty years, generations of readers have thrilled to Herriot's marvelous tales, deep love of life, and extraordinary storytelling abilities. For decades, Herriot roamed the remote, beautiful Yorkshire Dales, treating every patient that came his way from smallest to largest, and observing animals and humans alike with his keen, loving eye.
In "All Creatures Great and Small," we meet the young Herriot as he takes up his calling and discovers that the realities of veterinary practice in rural Yorkshire are very different from the sterile setting of veterinary school. Some visits are heart-wrenchingly difficult, such as one to an old man in the village whose very ill dog is his only friend and companion, some are lighthearted and fun, such as Herriot's periodic visits to the overfed and pampered Pekinese Tricki Woo who throws parties and has his own stationery, and yet others are inspirational and enlightening, such as Herriot's recollections of poor farmers who will scrape their meager earnings together to be able to get proper care for their working animals. From seeing to his patients in the depths of winter on the remotest homesteads to dealing with uncooperative owners and critically ill animals, Herriot discovers the wondrous variety and never-ending challenges of veterinary practice as his humor, compassion, and love of the animal world shine forth. James Herriot's memoirs have sold 80 million copies worldwide, and continue to delight and entertain readers of all ages.
Publisher: London : Joseph, 1975.
ISBN: 9780718113247
0718113241
Characteristics: [6], 442 p. ;,23 cm.

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GCPL_Angela Dec 03, 2017

Pure delight from start to finish, and surprisingly funny. I was actually strongly reminded of Bill Bryson's work, as both authors seem to have a rare talent for getting themselves into scrapes and then describing them in self-deprecating, hilarious detail. And although there's obviously a lot about animals here, Herriot is an equally astute observer of people, and his accounts of ornery local farmers and his eccentric boss Siegfried are so sharp and insightful, and I'll say it again, funny.

Some standouts that had me rolling: the first chapter, in which Herriot struggles to deliver a calf as a surly old-timer looks on and provides commentary, and Herriot suiting up in the head-to-toe rubber calving outfit (Chapter 22). If you don't read anything else, read those two chapters. They'll give you a good feel for the work as a whole, and they're just so dang funny. Yes, there's a couple of passages that will have you dabbing your eyes. But an emotionally manipulative tear-jerker it is not, and thank goodness for that.

Make no mistake about it: veterinary medicine is a noble profession indeed, and Herriot shows (without ever tooting his own horn) just how much pluck, stamina, knowledge, compassion, and yes, humor, are required to be a good one.

If you're an animal lover, add this one to your list!

CRRL_VirginiaJohnson Nov 13, 2015

A newly-minted Scottish veterinarian begins his practice in the hills of Yorkshire in the 1940s. James Herriot's self-deprecating humor and kind understanding of his fellow humans and their animals makes this and its successors classics. Perfect to have on hand for sick days, vacations, or any time you want to be entertained.

The classic book about a country vet and the community and animals he serves. The stories are sometimes funny and sometimes sad, but they are always heartwarming.

a
alexisstanley
Apr 18, 2014

Any books by this author are great.

h
HannaBanana41
Jul 22, 2013

I loved reading this as well as watching the DVD series.
I know it's old but a wonderful recount of James Herriot's life as a vet in Yorkshire. He's a natural as writer and observer of people and landscapes.
Makes me really want to visit all the places he writes about.

s
shadynz
May 11, 2013

Lovely to read this series again! Never fails to please.

m
margo_boyd
Nov 06, 2012

I too read these when I was in grade school and am rereading them - they're absolutely delightful. I'll be buying some used copies for family soon.

h
Heidi1974
Nov 08, 2011

This was a great book if you like comical rural veterinary life in Ireland. I couldn't put it down. It reminded me greatly of Patrick Taylors An Irish Country Doctor Series. A few of the stories were almost exactly alike.

c
ckross
Apr 25, 2011

May 2011 bookclub read

lb1987 May 06, 2010

This whole series is heart-warming. It also provides an insight into the life of a country vet in the early part of the 20th century.

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SPL_STARR Jun 16, 2015

"They didn't say anything about this in the books, I thought, as the snow blew in through the gaping doorway and settled on my naked back."

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