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All Creatures Great and Small

Average Rating 4.5
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

11 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

Educational and humorous - a must read for aspiring veterinarians!

As a teenager in the technical age, I sometimes forget about the hard work that past generations have done. I recently adopted a dog from my local humane society, and I love her very much. When my family and I take her to the veterinarian, I imagine an air condition off...
As a teenager in the technical age, I sometimes forget about the hard work that past generations have done. I recently adopted a dog from my local humane society, and I love her very much. When my family and I take her to the veterinarian, I imagine an air condition office with sterile instruments organized in cabinets and large, metal operating tables, but that is not the case for Mr. James Herriot in his memoir All Creatures Great and Small. Fresh out of veterinary school and newly employed at a small private practice, James is unprepared for long drives, unreasonable farmers, and disobedient farm animals and must adapt quickly to life in the Yorkshire countryside. Mr. Herriot's veterinary experiences are not only educational to any aspiring veterinarians, but also quite humorous, as he makes light of the sometimes trying moments of his practice. He shows his dedication to the animals and his practice by putting them first. For instance, James attends a last-minute case of a scouring cow at the cost of a chance to win fifty pounds at the horse races. In addition, just after wedding his wife, they spend their honeymoon testing farm animals for tuberculosis. Through each chapter, I grew more and more connected with James and his life of service. I learned to appreciate the life I have now and not to complain because there always is someone working harder or having a worse day.

posted by AustynL on October 9, 2010

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Most Helpful Critical Review

4 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

Somewhat Enjoyable Read

All Creatures Great and Small is a somewhat interesting book. This book has action, tragedy, and is a bit comedic. I found it to bore me a little as I reached the halfway point in the book. The book seems to go on and on forever right until you finish. Being part of...
All Creatures Great and Small is a somewhat interesting book. This book has action, tragedy, and is a bit comedic. I found it to bore me a little as I reached the halfway point in the book. The book seems to go on and on forever right until you finish. Being part of a younger generation I didn't find this book to be very fun or action packed like books today. I would recommend this book to people who are older, but not people still in high school. Some parts were appealing to me and got me reading for a while but then as the book slowed down again I felt bored. James Herriot is a young man just out of college. His job sends him to treat from the biggest to smallest of all animals. Along with animals he meets all kind of people with a range of personality. "Tricki request the pleasure of Uncle Herriot's company on Friday February 5th. Drinks and Dancing." (109) James even gets letters from his patients who are overly spoiled by their rich owners. Not only does he get to go to high class parties but gets regular gift baskets from some of his patients, but also gets invited to have dinner from several farmers. Along with being spoiled countless times from countless patients and farmers James experiences very tragic moments in the story. One of the most memorable moments was when James had to put down a dog. The owner of the dog had told James he was his only friend. "The old man was silent, then he said 'Just a minute,' and slowly and painfully knelt down by the side of the dog. He did not speak, but ran his hand again and again over the grey old muzzle and the ears, while the tail thump, thump, thumped on the floor." (75) This was an enjoyable book to read but I don't recommend it to people of a younger age.

posted by Austin_E on October 15, 2011

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  • Posted October 9, 2010

    Educational and humorous - a must read for aspiring veterinarians!

    As a teenager in the technical age, I sometimes forget about the hard work that past generations have done. I recently adopted a dog from my local humane society, and I love her very much. When my family and I take her to the veterinarian, I imagine an air condition office with sterile instruments organized in cabinets and large, metal operating tables, but that is not the case for Mr. James Herriot in his memoir All Creatures Great and Small. Fresh out of veterinary school and newly employed at a small private practice, James is unprepared for long drives, unreasonable farmers, and disobedient farm animals and must adapt quickly to life in the Yorkshire countryside. Mr. Herriot's veterinary experiences are not only educational to any aspiring veterinarians, but also quite humorous, as he makes light of the sometimes trying moments of his practice. He shows his dedication to the animals and his practice by putting them first. For instance, James attends a last-minute case of a scouring cow at the cost of a chance to win fifty pounds at the horse races. In addition, just after wedding his wife, they spend their honeymoon testing farm animals for tuberculosis. Through each chapter, I grew more and more connected with James and his life of service. I learned to appreciate the life I have now and not to complain because there always is someone working harder or having a worse day.

    11 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 19, 2012

    Hey people! Read this:) :)

    Hey people! SERIOUSLY, THIS IS NOT A CHAT ROOM. I AM TIRED OF SEEING " HEY ROBIN, OR HEY FUZZYFACE. I DONT CARE IF YOU NEED TO TALK, GO ON FACEBOOK OR TWITTER. People rely on these reviews and i dought they want to hear about some random person. Now stop with the chatroom stuff. Im in 5 th grade, and i hate seeing this stuff and everybody else does too!

    7 out of 24 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 16, 2011

    For All Animal Lovers!

    When I was a young girl I always wanted to be a veterinarian. I thought that it would be so much fun to be with the animals all day long. The moment I saw All Creatures Great and Small by James Herriot I knew it was a book for me. I recommend this book for anyone and everyone who loves animals. In this memoir you get to experience the fun, lighthearted moments James has with his numerous animal clients, like the time he gets a letter from a small dog named Tricki. "Tricki requests the pleasure of Uncle Herriot's company on Friday, February 5th. Drinks and dancing," (111). While reading All Creatures Great and Small you could experience how James felt, especially when he miracurosly saves two twin cows. "Twins are often dead when they're mixed up like that-good job we got them out alive," (359). James Herriot does a wonderful job explaining the hardships and accomplishments he faces as a young vet in Yorkshire, England. Therefore, I would definitely recommend this book to all people who share a love for animals.

    6 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2011

    Read it thats all im going to say

    This is oone the most amazing books i have ever read and i love it

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 24, 2011

    Great Book

    This is a great book but it made me cry.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 8, 2012

    I loved reading this book and how it just took me away and broug

    I loved reading this book and how it just took me away and brought me to those green hills with beautiful forests. This book is constantly moving while making you laugh or just smile with its humor. This book does require an elevated reading ability to be able to follow the flow of the story. The chapters are usually very short and in each chapter you get immersed in a entirely different story each time, and this is the one part I didn’t like because that made it very hard to be aware of how much time passed throughout the story. But that is the only downfall of the book but a few times the chapters do connect and once you get the hang of how that part works you will be just fine. Also unless you are very familiar with the veterinary practice then you will encounter quite a few terms of different diseases tools and various other things of the sort but do not let that worry you too much because you don’t really have to understand them to enjoy the book, and the book also does a very good job of telling you what is going on in these cases. This book is a great read and I enjoyed reading the book the whole time.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 17, 2012

    Loved it

    Makes me think of my grandfather, also a vet in the country.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 15, 2011

    An Inspiring memoir

    The memoir, All Creatures Great and Small, is a surprisingly interesting life story of a veterinarian in rural England. Most of us work in offices or labs, and whenever we go to the vet, we are in a clean, sterile environment: a hospital. Yorkshire is very different from the vet hospitals that we know. James Herriot thinks back on this several times throughout his book, and most of these times he is helping a cow or horse give birth. In our textbooks, everything looks so easy and clean, but in the real world, it gets down and dirty. James discovers this very early on, as countless farmers and animals strive to make his job more difficult. I like this book because I can really see these things happening. It is not so far-fetched that I cannot believe it, but still different enough from daily life that it is interesting. I especially like the quote: "If having a soul means being able to feel love and loyalty and gratitude, then animals are a lot better off than humans." (270) James says this while comforting an old lady when her dog dies. Another thing that I found memorable is a quote here that enhances the fact that every job, no matter how difficult, has its own, special, rewards: "This was my favorite part. The little miracle. The newly born calf was shaking its head and trying to sit up." (7) I really enjoyed reading all about James Herriot's experiences in Yorkshire, England, and I hope that you will too. I would really recommend this book to anyone interested in reading it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 11, 2011

    Interesting and humor filled read; highly recommend this book.

    All Creatures Great and Small was a comforting kind of book; it's filled with these detailed and funny stories about an up-and-coming veterinarian in Yorkshire, along with the crazy people he lives and encounters along the way and funny animals he meets. This book was everything; it was depressing, it was motivating, it was intriguing, it was upsetting. Personally, I would recommend this book to everyone and anyone, providing that you have a great love for God's furry creatures. The themes in this book are also remarkable; passion, courage, determination, and happiness are all major and the way that Herriot incorporates them into this book is phenomenal. The only aspect of this book I didn't much care for was Tristan, and he was just a character in the book I found to be very obnoxious and unhelpful. I found All Creatures Great and Small to be a funny and entertaining novel, and look forward to reading more of James Herriot books. If you are looking for a book that will make you appreciate any animal in your life, or just something funny and interesting to read with deep themes that leave you speech-less, I would highly recommend All Creatures Great and Small. Another book I might recommend, although not by Herriot, is 19 minutes by Jodi Picoult.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 11, 2011

    Wounderful Read- Such a Heartwarming Book!

    All Creatures Great and Small, is a heartwarming book, told by a marvelous story teller, James Herriot. The first installment in this moving series tells how Mr. James Herriot became the Yorkshire Dales finest veterinarian. This novel is uplifting and I would recommend it everyone! I am personally not a big fan of animals, but I still adored this book. Each chapter tells of a different adventure that James Herriot had, and everyone of them gave a special insight into what life was like back in the Yorkshire Dales. It took me a while to really get into the book, but after the first few chapters, I was completely captivated with this book. The stories told are so funny and I would find myself chuckling aloud throughout the book. So flowing, creative, and inventive, it is hard to believe that this in a non-fiction novel. It seems like this could be a story told by a very creative author... but no! It is a joyous read based off of real life encounters of a young veterinarian. I not only enjoyed this book for its content, but I enjoyed it due to the fact that is sheds lights on a time and place (the Yorkshire Dales)not often talked about throughout history. After completing this novel, I really wanted to be a veterinarian across the pond in the Yorkshire Dales of England. I intend to read the next few books in this series, in hope of learning more about how James Herriot continued his life and work as such a successful veterinarian.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 10, 2011

    All Things Entertaining and Heartwarming...Are in this Book

    From cows to horses to laughter to miracles, this book contains everything necessary for a good mood book to kick back and read in spare time. Its easy to forget the hardships that people used to have to deal with before technology made everything so much more manageable. Back in the 1940's when this book took place, farming was still the most common means of earning a living especially in little rural towns out in Scotland. With an economy like this, animals were as good, if not better, than money itself so the health of an animal is top priority. This is where James Herriot comes in. James is an up and coming veterinarian aspiring to make it big in the animal medicine field. This book is the tale of his journey from when he lands his first internship until when he finally becomes a partner in the business with his mentor. Herriot tells the story in such a detailed a personal way that it makes it seem as if you are right along side him every step of the way. The stories in this book range from crazy old ladies who treat their dogs as if they were children to stubborn old men that like to blame everything on the vet and there's even a little bit of a love story woven in as well. The overall theme of the book is that persistence and determination will eventually bring good results. It seemed that every time Herriot managed to solve one problem, there was another waiting for him just around the corner, but despite that, Herriot never gave up and it paid off in the end. What I liked most about this book was that it was an autobiography so the detail that Herriot gave was that which could never be replicated by another. The imagery was outstanding and every time I picked up the book I swear I could smell the hay and slop that lay inside the pig pen. The only thing I didn't like very much was that sometimes the story went on and on about parts that weren't extremely exciting and they were hard to get though but the book would pick right back up again after that. I definitely recommend this book and the two sequels, All Things Bright and Beautiful and All things Wise and Wonderful also by James Herriot, to anyone looking for an entertaining story that will capture your heart in a minute and leave you wondering how you read a 450 page book in such a short amount of time.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 26, 2010

    C'est excellent!

    Olalaa ! je suis tres content parce-que c'est livre est magnifique!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 12, 2010

    Adorable and funny!

    The book All Creatures Great and Small is about a kind and very patient country vet, James Herriot, who travels from farm to farm helping farm animals. He encounters troubling sicknesses and trying farmers who think that they know more than him about animals. But yet, Mr. Herriot still prevails in even the toughest situations. I absolutely love this book and suggest it for anyone who likes reading and who loves animals. This book illustrates how special life is and how everything is beautiful in its own way. Herriot continuously marvels at the English countryside sights, and how lucky he is in participating in bringing new life to this world. I like how the book really doesn't have a sense of time but goes from one entertaining story to another. Many of the adventures James Herriot experiences will make you laugh out loud or gasp with shock. One thing I did not like was that sometimes it was a little too descriptive about some of the procedures the vet had to do to help an animal. This is not a book for someone who does not like to hear about feces or animal body parts. All in all, it is a fascinating book that will take you for a fun ride.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 15, 2010

    Priceless

    The James Herriot books are absolutely wonderful. When you read his writing, you wish you could have met him before he passed away. These are very absorbing and honest stories about his experiences as a vet in rural England in the 1930's, but even if you know nothing about veterinary medicine or rural England, you can still enjoy these books. They are really about people--his co-workers and the owners of the animals he cares for. Funny (sometimes very funny!), sad, touching--really a little slice of life. And the stories (little vignettes) are only a few pages long, so it's great for bedside or travel reading--easy to find a stopping place. The mass market versions are cheap--you won't be sorry you bought this book! Also make great gifts for animal lovers.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 4, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    A warm and lighthearted account of life in Yorkshire

    All Creatures Great and Small is the first in a series of books written by the author James Herriot about his life as a veterinarian in the Yorkshire dales. Set in the fictitious town of Darrowby, the book begins with Herriot arriving for an interview with Siegfried Farnon for a job as an assistant veterinarian. Farnon, a charming bachelor of mature years, is described as a temperamental boss with a warm heart. Herriot is given the job and is invited to stay in Farnon's home - Skeldale House-which also doubles up as the veterinary clinic. This first volume records Herriot's experiences with the farmers who are reticent yet are extremely warm and generous once familiarity develops. Siegfried's brother, Tristan, arrives at Skeldale House on a study break from veterinary school and becomes a part of daily life in Darrowby. Being of a carefree nature, he is the cause of some comic mishaps and confrontations with Siegfried. Herriot also describes falling in love with a local girl, Helen, who complements his shy, diffident nature. The first volume ends with his marriage to Helen.
    Set in the days preceding world war II, one gets an insight into the tough lives of farmers in the dales. Herriot is enchanted by the wild beauty of the countryside and enjoys every minute of his existence in Yorkshire. He describes his successes and failures with ease lending us a sense of deja vu with regards to our own similar emotional experiences. The relationship between him and Siegfried is one of mutual respect developing into a strong friendship. One gets the sense of bonhomie and camaraderie between Siegfried, Tristan and Herriot. He beautifully captures the Yorkshire accent in his narration in the book. This is a book that can be read at any time by children and adults alike.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 18, 2013

    A wonderful story teller

    All the James Herriot books are absolutely delightful since 1) they are taken from real life and 2) he is a wonderfully good story teller. Another feature I like is that each story is an easily read chapter unto itself so you can pick up the book for ten minutes and read an entire story; it's a collection of linked short stories.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 10, 2013

    Mistyclaw

    I wish so to know go back to camp and relax maby moon over zap while i moon over dread he is so CUTE

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 9, 2013

    Gingerstar

    Gtg. Post later

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 8, 2013

    Fatal to ginger

    Say its herbclan or summin but then wen they leev change it back!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 8, 2013

    Perfection

    James herriots books are my all time favorite! I highly suggest it!

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