Brittany's Reviews > All Creatures Great and Small

All Creatures Great and Small by James Herriot
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May 04, 11

bookshelves: history, sciencewriting
Read from April 30 to May 01, 2011

I can't remember how old I was when I read James Herriot for the first time. It must have been late elementary school or middle school. What I do remember is the burning desire it fostered in me (and in probably every other child who reads it) to be a vet. James Herriot adored his life, and his passion pours through in his simple, straightforward, but absorbing, storytelling.

It was recently, standing beside (and filming) one of our vets as he put his arm to the shoulder up the back ends of a stream of Przewalski's horses (and I discovered that vets now wear scrubs and very long gloves rather than stripping to the waist) that I realized it was time for a reread.

These books age perfectly, in that they age not at all. Reading them now I am no longer seized by the urge to run out and apply to veterinary school. Rather, I'm grateful for my own occupation. But the stories, the characters, and the puzzles of Herriot's life still make for compelling reading. The stories and their messages are still as sharp and fresh as when I read them as a child. They are still funny, sad, and wonderful, and they instill the same desire to share them with as many people as possible. I caught myself looking forward to having kids, just so I can read these books with them.

This book is the first installment of Herriot's books, and introduces the immortal Tricki Woo and the phrase "flop bott."
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04/30/2011 page 147
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