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on 24 April 2017
THIS is not the first time I've read this book. In fact it's the third over many years, starting with the original paperbacks. I do wish I'd kept them. I love the TV series too.
Beautifully written in a descriptive, humorous style ,the stories unfold of a newly trained vet. His busy , non glamorous job tending farm animals all over the beautiful hills and dales. It will make you laugh out loud one minute and bring a tear to your eye another but you won't want to stop reading. If you love animals ,people and wonderful countryside this is book you will love and probably reread every few years.
6 people found this helpful
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on 1 October 2017
Many years ago I watched the TV versions of the books, but never read the actual books until now. Looking back I don't think the TV versions did the books justice, once started they are difficult to put down. The stories cover the highs and lows of a country vets life in the late 1930's at the same time they highlight the struggle many farmers faced just to survive in what for many were hard times with few of the modern drugs we now take for granted available.
They are a enjoyable, easy read, perhaps with a little touch of rose tinted glasses here and there but who cares, read and enjoy them.
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on 2 March 2018
I've loved reading this book, having watched the series as as child, I remembered some of the story line from the series, but that didn't interfere with my enjoyment of the book at all. Absolutely wonderful stories of old fashioned English rural farm and country life, made me feel nostalgic for the olden days, even though it was before my time! Heart warming, feel good stories, guaranteed to make you smile. I shall definitely be buying the whole series of books over the coming months.
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on 13 February 2016
Well it's some 35 years since I first read this book and it has not lost an ounce of it's magic. I laughed and giggled my way through it and that is not always good when its 3am and you find yourself with a fit of the giggles. I could not even explain the humour to family for the tears running down my face and the near hysterical images as they had been portrayed in the book. I could not wait to get stuck into the rest of the Herriot series and was not let down by any of them. When they were first advertised as a TV series, I waited with bated breath hoping they had not lost the quality of the characters and to be fair they did a good job of portraying James, Segfreid and Tristram and all their many exploits, but the books are all better, you can really get into the character and the setting and be a part of each case they handle.
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on 1 September 2016
Read all these books years ago and am revisiting as many as possible during a holiday close to Finghall, near Constable Burton in the Yorkshire Dales. Brilliant stories, gentle but observant humour. A real treat.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 4 February 2013
Having thoroughly enjoyed all of the Herriot books since they first appeared in the early 1970s, it came as a really pleasant surprise to find that they are available for Kindle and I have consequently purchased this one.

In my opinion 'All Creatures Great and Small' represents excellent value,as it constitutes the first two books ('If Only They Could Talk' and 'It Shouldn't Happen To a Vet') and a small part of the third one ('Let Sleeping Vets Lie') as they were originally published as three separate titles in the UK.

Those who recall the BBC version of the Herriot series may well be interested in All Creatures Great and Small: Complete Series [DVD], a DVD box set, which contains every series together with the Christmas episodes. I would personally recommend it as an excellent complement to the books themselves.

I would also recommend The Real James Herriot: The Authorized Biography written by the author's son, as apart from being a worthy read in its own right, it provides a fascinating insight into the author, his characters and storylines.
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on 15 February 2014
I read these in my childhood years because they made me laugh so often and the storyline of James's life is the ultimate soap in its way. He was fantastic at painting a scene and as good at describing people as he was at giving personality to the animals he treated. I can see why it was felt it would make good TV but in fact I absolutely loathed the series.

In retrospect I also learned an enormous amount about life in those times, animals and their care, the personality of Yorkshire and its people, the effects of the War and changes in medicine and pharmaceuticals, that have stayed with me to to this day. But those things just happened as the plot unrolled.

I re-read these a few years back - ALL the Herriot books - and still found them compulsive reading. I'd pick the next one up as soon as I finished the last page. Now I have digital versions I can take anywhere, if I want to step back into the busy, troubled, hilarious, sad, beautiful and heartwarming world of a vet in one of the UK's most gorgeous and unforgiving regions.
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on 17 February 2018
This is the original though there have been many imitators since. Written in a plain ,chatty style which perfectly matches the subject this book brings a lost era back to life. Warm and witty all the characters from grumpy farmers to huge earred kittens come to life through Herriot's talented pen.
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on 18 March 2014
I actually have not read much of it, but this is my third James Herriot book. I have just finished James Herriot's book on Dog Stories. Amazing if you are a dog lover, especially the story of Judy the Nurse Dog! I just want to read all of the James Herriot books now because they make me feel happy. Such great descriptions. How did he remember the detail?? I don't like reading a book twice, but I will have no problem reading these books again.

The first James Herriot book I took out of the library was on Audio - so, so funny! I now have Tristrin's accent in my head when I am reading on my kindle. This makes the books more like watching the program on television. So much part of my childhood. Might get some of these on audio too.
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on 3 August 2017
How can you not love this? A great story-teller, set in beautiful Yorkshire, with a host of characters. One of the few books where I actually laugh out loud - frequently.
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