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Side by side
This book is not only about pet and owner relationships -- just as important are the family relationships explored by the author, including a tribute to his father. This is a moving and funny work by a gifted writer.
Linda J. (Manchester, MO)
Ever By My Side
This book is must reading for anyone who has a pet, has had a pet, or will have a pet.
Karen S. (Minneapolis, MN)
Loved this book!
Veterinarian Dr. Nick Trout’s accounting of his journey to veterinary medicine grabs the heartstrings and tickles the funny bone.
Written in the similar style as John Grogan who wrote Marley and Me, Trout tells hilarious tales such as the time his yellow lab, Meg, who has a propensity of making nightly raids on the trashcan, gets a turkey carcass with the “end” result being what one would expect – and much more.
Born, raised, and educated in England, Trout knew his father was an animal lover and followed James Harriott, author of All Creatures Great and Small.
While Trout wanted a puppy, his mother would have none of it. When his father brings home Patch, a German shepherd, the dog bonds with the father more than Trout, but his father takes Trout along on all the veterinarian visits, piquing Trout’s interest in veterinary medicine.
When Patch finally succumbs to age-related disease, Trout’s mother, much to the surprise to the family, brings home a black lab mix, Bess, a puppy who had gotten her head stuck in a fence. Within days, his father brings home Whiskey, a golden retriever puppy. They prove to be quite a spirited mix.
The family moves to Yorkshire Dales, mainly because Harriott lives close by and because the father hopes that Trout will choose farm animals as his specialty.
That is not to be. After graduating from The Royal College of Veterinary Medicine, and visiting the United States, Trout chooses to go to the states to practice.
Trout marries and therein follows a succession of animals, Reggie C. Cat, Sophie, a Jack Russell terrier, and the infamous Meg.
He intersperses stories of these pets along with those of his patients, his successes and failures, and how his relationship with his father and the family pets have shaped him as a husband, father, and veterinarian.
I can see this being made into a movie with Matt Damon, Colin Farrell, or Liev Schreiber as Trout.
Trout now and his family live in Boston where he is staff surgeon at Angell Animal Medical Center.
I was delighted with this book, both the heartwarming stories and the wonderfully descriptive use of language. I found it to be just a joyful book to read, not because every story is joyful, but because it left me feeling so grateful for the pets (and the people) I've been blessed to know in my life.
Laura F. (Diablo, CA)
For the Love of Animals and Family
I was so looking forward to another book written by Dr. Nick Trout - I devoured his first book "Tell Me Where it Hurts". and looked forward to his next books like I did when I was younger waiting for the next James Herriot book to be published-I laughed when I realized that Dr. Trout was extremely familiar with the Herriot books and mentioned them often in "Ever By My SIde!" Once I began this book I couldn't put it down. A wonderful storyteller, Dr. Trout invites us into his life, making me laugh out loud as well as cry. A moving memoir, although I would like to read more about Dr. Trout's vet experiences.
Janice H. (Savage, Minnesota)
Wonderful Dog Memories
Ever By My Side by Dr Nick Trout is a wonderful tribute to the animals in his life and an enjoyable read. The author is a great storyteller and tells stories that make you laugh and sometimes cry right along with him. It’s a great story of the dogs in his life as a child, the ones he leaves at home when he goes to college, the ones that he gets to know as a veterinarian and the dogs that become a part of his children’s lives. The connection between his father and the family dogs is heartwarming and sincere. With his focus on the canine creatures and their place in each family, he shares great insight into the relationship between an animal and his owner. When Nick leaves home, “Six years in six minutes,” describe the years from high school to college graduation, which is just the way life can be sometimes. I thoroughly enjoyed reading these adventures and would recommend it to anyone who has or has had a special pet in their life.
WDH (New Port Richey, FL)
Easy Read / Slightly Uneven
This book was very easy to read. The style is light and informative without getting too technical with any of the veterinary details. I enjoyed the stories about his parents and their family dogs and the author does a great job explaining cat behavior for someone who professes to prefer dogs. There were some uneven sections where the storyline/flow doesn't work too well and endings to a few of the stories seem a bit abrupt, almost needing a few more details. Overall, a very enjoyable light read.
Colleen L. (Casco, ME)
A moving memoir...Ever By My Side
What a lovely and moving book! Dr Trout does an excellent job describing his life growing up in England surrounded by dogs. Anyone who has ever grown up with animals will empathize with his experiences. The story is so much more, however. The dynamics between his father and him are written beautifully. His father is written with such tenderness and love and understanding.
Carol J. (Isle, MN)
Shaped by my pets
I believe this book will appeal to both people who love animals but also to those people who enjoy memoirs. I loved the book and found it funny, touching and compassionate. I would highly recommend this book to all my friends.
Dr. Trout's memoir "Ever By My Side", was an engaging, if not uneven book. It seemed to me that his narrative would run along smoothly and entertainingly, and then get stuck. The stories were fun, I enjoyed the insights into British life and their relationship with their pets. Must admit I felt Dr. Trout missed some teachable moments as a vet; although potentially controversial. Inside vs outside cat, training of dogs to be good citizens.
With the number of other 'dog' and 'cat' books available, not sure I would put this one too high on the list.