Monday, September 24, 2012

An Irish Country Doctor

Finished An Irish Country Doctor by Patrick Taylor. So much of this book reminded me of James Herriot's All Creatures Great and Small series. Just as James Herriot, veterinarian, travels to Darrowby to apprentice with the eccentric and often maddening Siegfried Farnon, Barry, just out of medical school, travels to Ballybucklebo in rural Northern Ireland, to apprentice with Dr. Fingal Flahertie O’Reilly. Barry encounters local characters and learns to follow Fingal's lead in handling them, as James did with Siegfried in the Yorkshire Dales. Both writers were practitioners in real life and thus drew on personal experience for their novels. My favorite character in Taylor's book is Arthur Guiness, Fingal's black lab who has a drinking habit and is greatly enamored of Barry's trouser legs. This was a charming book and a very quick read. I look forward to reading the next book in the series, probably next year.

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