With an overwhelming number of positive reviews, Ever By My Side is a favorite amongst BookBrowse readers; 39 out of 42 people rate it 4 or 5 stars! Here's what they have to say:
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 been raised around animals will empathize with his experiences (Colleen L). Without being preachy, Dr. Trout relates the lessons learned from humans and animals and, in particular, how those interactions helped him find a way to cope with the inevitable difficulties of adulthood (Georgette I). Ever By My Side is so much more than a pet story, covering family dynamics through two generations (Carrol Ann S). His honesty in dealing with both good and difficult situations is very appealing (Karla S), and I found it to be 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 (Karen S).
Many enjoyed Dr. Trout's accessible and engaging writing style:
When Nick Trout stated that English was his worst subject in school he must have been joking (Karla S)! His style is conversational and makes you want to listen to all he has to say (Joan P). Ever By My Side is very easy to read. The style is light and informative without getting too technical with any of the veterinary details (WDH). Dr. Trout's descriptions are often tender but not saccharine (Georgette I), and I was delighted with the author's wonderfully descriptive use of language (Karen S). His writing style is full of self-deprecating humor (Sandra G), and the dynamic between him and his father is written beautifully; he describes his father with tenderness and love and understanding (Colleen L). Written in a similar style to John Grogan, author of Marley and Me, Ever By My Side grabs the heartstrings and tickles the funny bone (Linda J).
But some readers had trouble getting into the book:
Dr. Trout's narrative would run along smoothly and entertainingly but then get stuck. With the number of other dog and cat books available, I'm not sure I would put this one too high on the list (Carol J). Dr. Trout's complaints about his childhood and parents come across as whiny and ungrateful, and his humor felt flat (Valerie C). Getting through the first quarter of Ever By My Side was slow, but as Dr. Trout reached his teen years, I was into the story and began to eagerly read on (Carrol Ann S).
Withal, it's clear that Ever By My Side has won the hearts of most BookBrowse readers:
If Dr. Trout's other two books (Tell Me Where It Hurts and Love Is the Best Medicine) are anything like this one, I am a fan for life. Not only is he a good vet, he is an excellent author. Worth, worth, worth your time (Deb Y)!
Who should read this book?
This book is a must-read for anyone who has a pet, has had a pet, or will have a pet (Linda J)! I believe it will appeal both to people who love animals and to people who enjoy memoirs (Colleen L). Men, in particular, will find the father/son relationship memorable (Patricia M). In my opinion, Ever By My Side would be a great book club selection (Gail L). I would definitely recommend this book to anyone, animal lover or not (Dianne S).
This review was originally published in March 2011, and has been updated for the February 2012 paperback release. Click here to go to this issue.
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