Ever By My Side: A Memoir in Eight [Acts] Pets Audio CD – Audiobook, CD, Unabridged
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"A tender tribute to the author's father." ---Kirkus
About the Author
Nick Trout graduated from veterinary school at the University of Cambridge, England, in 1989, and he is the author of the New York Times bestseller Tell Me Where It Hurts, The Patron Saint of Dogs, and Love Is the Best Medicine. He lives in Massachusetts with his wife, daughters, and two dogs: Meg, a yellow Labrador, and Sophie, a Jack Russell terrier.
Simon Vance, a former BBC Radio presenter and newsreader, is a full-time actor who has appeared on both stage and television. He has recorded over four hundred audiobooks and has earned five coveted Audie Awards, and he has won over twenty Earphones Awards from AudioFile magazine, which has named him a Golden Voice.
Top Customer Reviews
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Dr Trout need not worry about my comparisons to James Herriot, his father was a true Herriot groupie, infusing his son with all things bright and beautiful in hopes it would influence Nick's choice of surgery location and a farm animal practice. In fact, their only family holiday was a trip to the Yorkshire Dales, viewing the television show's exterior locations with their own visit to Thirsk, where they met James Wight (James Herriot's alter ego). Mum and Dad even bought a retirement cottage in the Dales. How could their son not set up a vet practice, managed by the retired Dad, in such a beautiful location?
Dr. Trout has a mind and destiny of his own. Moving across the pond to Boston to advance his surgical training, he finds his future wife and family. Pets mark the important passages of his family and parents lives. From his boyhood's German Shephard (dog lovers will go wild over the abundance of endearing stories) to his daughter's cat that owned the 'hood. Throughout he relates how pets drew him closer to his parents, his own children and them to him. Although our furry family cannot stay with us forever, their memories and impact always do.
Nick's memoir is centered on the impact the love of animals have on humans throughout our lives. His is not an overly sentimental, sugary story. He takes a compassionate view of his charges and their humans. Showing us the unconditional love our furry friends bring to us. They round us out, plump us up and make our lives better. They help us realize how important other people are to us. That is no small feat.
Enjoy the read!
In the process of weaving this story around his family and the pets that moved through their lives, Trout brought another author to mind: a devout dog person who changed the way many of us look at our four-legged friends, James Thurber. When I read certain passages regarding a yellow Labrador puppy it was like reading "The Dog Who Bit People" Thurber's dogs: A collection of the master's dogs, written and drawn, real and imaginary, living and long ago (A Touchstone book)for the first time again. Trout, like Thurber, lets us see his dogs as DOGS, not furry children. They keep their identity and dignity, and are none the less for it.
And as for cats ...
Like Trout, I have had dogs all my life. Like the good Doctor, only one cat ever managed to make it through my canine defenses. She established herself in my life, and found her place with the two dogs in my house. She departed in the same way she arrived, on her own terms. There may be only one cat in this book, but there really is no need for another; the comparison would simply not be fair.
A good fast read that works on several levels - parents and kids and pets measured out over a space of time, growing together, touching one another's lives, and moving on - in short, life as we know it. Enjoy!
That's why I loved Trout's newest book. Yes the animal stories are sweet but even more enjoyable were the people stories...as they lived, loved and grew along side the animals. Best of all Trout allows us into his own life as he reflects on his role as a man, son and father. How these relationships play out and unfold is really the heart of the book.
For me, this book was all about family, love and legacies...both from the two and four legged perspective. I think you'll not only love this book but I predict there is someone important to your life that you'll share it with as well.
"Ever by My Side" takes the reader through a journey from boyhood to adulthood. We learn of Dr. Trout's uneasy relationship with his maternal grandmother's bratty dog; his love for Patches the protective German shepherd of boyhood;his love for family, and coping with the heartbreak of his daughter's diagnosis. I love dogs, so I was naturally drawn to this book; however, I found myself especially taken by Dr. Trout's father. I absolutely loved his father's devotion to his dogs; admiration for all things James Herriot; acceptance of his son's decisions regarding his path in life, and most especially his acquired Yorkshire accent. If I were not so terrible at mimicking accents I would have one too.
I would recommend this book especially to dog lovers, but I think anyone who appreciates father/son relationships would enjoy it as well. Nick Trout's memoir is an enjoyable introspective account of what steered him into veterinary medicine, his love for animals,and above all his love of family.
The stories from Trout's childhood, the trek through veterinary school, and the animals that inhabited and warmed his heart and soul are unforgettable. The writing that brings them to life is superb. Animal lover or not, the reader can't help but be drawn to the child-Nick begging for a dog. His remembered child speaks directly to the inner child in the reader, tweaking and poking and teasing up memories of things wanted but denied and brilliant moments of acquisition and achievement. Dr. Trout handles every event with the same attention to detail and open-heartedness, and it is that quality that makes the stories riveting. His viewpoint on the world outside, whether it be the difficulty of dealing with the commercialism of livestock farming or the heartsickness at another owner's loss of a beloved pet, is clear-eyed with a hefty dose of compassion and the fine writing skills to back it all up.
Easily on a par (or better) with his father's idol, James Herriot, Nick Trout brings his life to us in full and glorious color. My guess is that there will be an increase in veterinary school applications as this book gains readership over the years. I, for one, have finally given in and allowed my cat to sleep on my head. After reading this book, how could I not?