If you’re a pet lover or would-be vet or just someone who enjoys a wry and witty account of someone else’s workday, you’ll enjoy this book. I can’t quite push it to five stars, but I’m glad I hung in through a few of the rocky spots. Trout writes well and is obviously a very experienced and talented veterinary surgeon. Other reviewers invariably compare him to James Herriot and his All Creatures Great and Small, usually to ill effect. I believe that’s unfair to Trout, who writes about his modern day urban pet practice, which is in no way comparable to the rural farm practice of the 1930s in northern England. I tend to think that the negative comments reflect a nostalgia for a simpler time rather than a critique of the writing itself.
Trout does spout a bit too much of his personal philosophy at times and I tend to think he is too full of himself. I sense some false modesty in his writing, too, but there are many great stories, both humorous and heart-warming to make the book well worth reading. Trout is English but practices in Boston. I’m a bit curious how the decision to stay in the United States to practice came about and he doesn’t really explain it. I listened to it on CDs. The British actor did a very good job conveying the smarmy wit and still was able to switch to a convincing serious tone when the content required it. He even did American women’s accents and voices creditably, if not perfectly.