Automotive Holiday Deals Books Gift Guide Books Gift Guide Shop Men's Athletic Shoes Learn more nav_sap_SWP_6M_fly_beacon Prime Music Sweepstakes egg_2015 All-New Amazon Fire TV Beauty Deals Gifts for Her Amazon Gift Card Offer cm15 cm15 cm15 $30 Off Amazon Echo $30 Off Fire HD 6 Kindle Cyber Monday Deals Cyber Monday Video Game Deals Shop Now HTL

Your rating(Clear)Rate this item

There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.

87 of 92 people found the following review helpful
on August 16, 2011
I want to warn all Herriot devotees that in buying the omnibus editions they are NOT getting all the stories! For example in Jim's courtship of Helen, the episode of the Daffodil Ball is omitted. Let me demonstrate. 'In Let Sleeping Vets Lie' chapter twenty three begins:

"After the night of the Daffodil Ball I just seemed to drift naturally into the habit of dropping in to see Helen on an occasional evening."

However in the omnibus edition we have:

"After the night at the cinema with Helen I just seemed to drift naturally into the habit of dropping in to see Helen on an occasional evening"

How dare they do this? I am extremely annoyed to have spent my money on these omnibus editions. I will now have to go to all lengths to get the original books which Amazon will not ship to New Zealand.

The American publishers think they know better than James Herriot how his stories should unfold. They are wrong.
1010 commentsWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
103 of 112 people found the following review helpful
James Herriot was a country veterinarion who lived in Yorkshire before (and after) World War II. His stories are funny, heartwarming, sad, and highly educational. And after reading this, you will either want to be a vet or be very grateful that you aren't one.
The book opens (after a brief chapter taking place several months later) with James arriving in Yorkshire, to be the assistant to the eccentric but kindly Siegfried Farnon (yes, that is his name). He becomes accustomed to Siegfried, Siegfried's mischievous younger brother Tristan (yes, that is his name), and the gruff, kindly farmers who eke out a living in the Yorkshire Dales. Pampered pooches who are spoiled rotten, savage pigs who chase Tristan around the farm, a nightmarishly strict secretary who drives Siegfried up the wall, James's car-with-no-brakes, cows running on three cylinders, a sadistic vet who makes James wear a rubber bodysuit, and an elderly, immensely wealthy widow who adopts a pig. And through this, James falls in love with the beautiful Helen Alderson and worms his way into the trust of the farmers.
James Herriot (real name, James Wight) was truly a one-of-a-kind man. He let readers into his head throughout the book, where the cows kick him across the yard, farmers often treat him as an interloper or a nuisance, and his boss gives contradicting orders from one day to the next. But he never loses his drive or his love of animals. (Okay, he hates some animals, but only as individuals) He even lets the readers see him at his worst, when he's humiliated by some recalcitrant livestock, and one horrible scene where he and his date show up drunk and mud-smeared in front of the girl he adores. (Not to mention when Tristan got him to use very feminine-smelling bath salts) But don't think that all of these stories are funny or romantic -- quite a few are aggravating or outright sad. James didn't soften the blows at all.
The people around James are just as fantastic: Siegfried, his weird but genial boss who can kick Tristan out of the house and forget about it overnight; Tristan, the mischievous anti-scholar who usually manages to keep out of trouble; and Helen, who seems a little too saintly at times (which isn't surprising, since James married her). There are a lot of details about surgery and stuff like that that will gross out the squeamish, but at least you'll learn a lot of medical trivia. (For example, what is a torsion?)
It's sweet, sad, funny, romantic, dramatic. "All Creatures Great And Small" (and its four sequels) is a fantastic read for all ages.
22 commentsWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
63 of 67 people found the following review helpful
These stories are true treasures. While the BBC series is amusing, these stories are far more personal. You get to met Dr. Herriot (a pseudonym for James Alfred Wight) who starts as a young veternarian just out of school and joins a country practice. Cows get the better of him, the local Yorkshire farmers one-up him, he gets his car inevitably stuck in the mud and yet prevails as a caring, resourceful vet who loves his quirkly rural clients as much the animals he cares for. He also writes with such laugh-outloud humor and self-deprecation you just wish the book would go on and on. Fortunately, he wrote four more of these books (each named for a line in a hymn) and a memoir of his father, in whose practice he began. They really give you the flavor of rural life in England before and after WWII.
I can't believe these stories are 30 years old, and Dr. Herriot has passed on. Thankfully he left this legacy behind for us to savor. These are books to re-read on dreary days with a cup of tea or just when you really need something to lift your spirits.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
32 of 35 people found the following review helpful
on November 17, 2006
What can one say about a masterpiece. For this is truly what this novel is. This is a timeless classic that will endure for generation after generation.

Follow the true adventures of Yorkshire veterinarian James Herriott and his charming comrades as he traverses the Yorkshire dales in the 1930's attending to the ailing animals that he loved so dearly. You'll feel every mile as he bumps along over the fells and moors. You'll see all the wild beauty of the extraordinary Yorkshire territory of England. But most importantly, you'll feel all the emotions tugging at your heart from the hardened Yorkshire farmers to the humorous and warmhearted denizens of Darrowby. You'll meet the inimitable Seigfried Farnon, James's veterinary partner, whose constant contradictions nevertheless fail to conceal a heart truly without malice of any kind and filled with love and generosity. You'll meet Seigfried's brother, Tristan, with his, shall we say, overly relaxed view of life. There's also Helen, the woman who captures James's heart and the hysterically funny Granville Bennett whose eating and drinking prowess is not to be outdone by anyone. Yes, there are these lively characters and more that pepper the pages of this work of literary genius.

But most of all, this novel will leave you with the warmest and coziest of feelings. From the blazing fires in the drawing rooms to the shivering winter nights spent delivering precious new animal lives, you'll be drawn into this world of delight and joy. Don't miss the opportunity of a lifetime to own this enchanting marvel!

Smash B
44 commentsWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on April 28, 2000
I recieved this book as a gift then it was first published in the 1970's. I have read it at least five times. Each time I read it I am delighted all over again.
This is an animal lover's delight - but it's much more than that. Follow the young James Herriott as he starts his adventure as a country veterninarian. You feel his pain and joy as he experiences failures and successes. His courtship with his wife-to-be Helen is poignant. Herriott tells it like it is: there's no fancy stuff. Don't let that make you think this is dull. Herriott's descriptions of the landscape and characters make you feel like you're there: the sights and smells he describes tantalize your senses. You can smell the fresh country air, the hearty farm meals, and so much more.
This is a book that will delight young and old alike. Read a chapter and it's a mini-book in itself, or curl up for the long haul. I found it very hard to put down.
You'll be enchanted by Herriott's adventures (and misadventures) and find yourself laughing and crying. Even after 5 reads, I'm ready for another. This stuff never gets old.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on February 13, 2000
It's been six years since I first bought one of James Herriot's novels, and far longer since I read his picture books (e.g. Bonnie's Big Day). Even now in my last year of high school, it's a choice I have never regretted making. All Creatures Great and Small is just one of the most heart-warming and touching books written by someone who was truly blessed by God. This book is serves as an inspiration and companion for the soul of any animal-lover, one whose stories will never fade with the passage of the years. It brings every facet of life and love into being, and is a calling for all animal-lovers around the globe. I have James Herriot, my idol, to thank for helping me choose veterinary medecine as my future career, a choice I have stood by for eleven years!
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on March 11, 2006
James Herriot doesn't just write in this novel. He picks the reader up and takes him or her along with him to his first traveling veterinary job. The stories run the gamut from sad to amusing with an emphasis on the latter and the writing is superb. I'm reading some other books by "authors" who don't have side jobs and they can't rival the mastery of writing that James Herriot exhibits in his very first novel.

This is an excellent book as are others in Herriot's collections. You can't go wrong. If you haven't read anything by Herriot, you're missing out. Start with this book and you'll want to keep a part of you in Herriot's world from now on.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
on June 27, 2003
Such a great book and a great beginning to an amazing series. I never had the oppourtunity to read this in school, but my older brother had a copy of it laying around for many years, and one day I picked it up and started reading. The stories were so engrossing it was hard to put this book down. The narration is so rich and textured, you can almost feel yourself transported to the places and meeting the people and animals, having the experiences the author talks about. In a way, I am sort of glad I didn't read this when I was younger, as I doubt that I would have appreciated as much as I do. Even though the stories take place a world away, the author has a way of making it seem familiar. After I finished this book, I went on to read the rest in the series, and I was never disappointed, but this one will always be my favorite. A great book for anyone, even if you don't care for animals.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on November 12, 1998
I found this book to be a very easy read, and would recommend it to anybody that reads at the fourth grade level or higher. The Scottish author, James Herriot, describes his life as a newly hired veterinarian, in pre-WWII England. He shares with readers his experiences in handling distressed animals, their owners and caretakers, the business of being a veterinarian, and the successes and failures of love and life.
His descriptions of the situations he was in, were right on. Being British, and the grandson of a blacksmith, I could easily picture in my mind what kind of weather he was experiencing, or how dark a barn, byer, or piggery might be. His characterizations of the local farmers and townspeople were great, and he met some really interesting people!
The book left me with a new respect for what life was like for people in the days when life seemed so much simpler than what it is today. I have just started "All Things Bright and Beautiful", and look forward to completing it, and the rest of Herriot's books in the future.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on December 13, 1999
This was a revolutionary book. This is the book that Herriot uses to first introduce us to his friends, both human and animal alike. You will find yourself laughing through tears as we follow this Scottish vet to an English land filled with inspiring stories of people, farmers, and of course, animals. The quirky characters lend us a picturesque look into the life of a country vet. There is just no other author who can touch me the way Herriot does. This book is not just a woman's book (as my review seems to point to), but men will find the farmers and Herriot (though sometimes drunken) screamingly funny. Herriot's memoirs are indeed a classic in it's own right. The only item that seems to frighten readers away is how truly English the book is written. The strong Yorkshire dialect can make the new Herriot reader a little frustrated at first. Yet stick with it. It will certainly come to you sooner than you think. It's worth the trouble... Believe me!
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
Customers who viewed this also viewed

All Things Wise and Wonderful (All Creatures Great and Small)
All Things Wise and Wonderful (All Creatures Great and Small) by James Herriot (Paperback - February 3, 2015)


Send us feedback

How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you?
Let us know here.