Newest Review: ... hard so she decides to leave work. An opportunity comes up for Maz to help out her old college friend Emma who has a vet practice i... more
Be A Pet And Buy This One
Trust Me, I'm a Vet - Cathy Woodman
Member Name: zoe_page_1
Trust Me, I'm a Vet - Cathy Woodman
Advantages: First book in a series, fun and easy to read
Though I'm not a pet owner and as such had never thought too much about it, I believed this book when it told me there are two types of vets (three if you count the Vietnam kind, though for these purposes let's not). No, I mean the city type who look after poodles and hamsters and maybe the odd depressed gold fish, and the country kind who stick their hands up cows' bottoms for fun, and think horses are man's second best friend, as well as essential equipment for extracurricular activities. Maz definitely falls into the first category, but when her love life gets as sticky as a cancerous canine tumour, she realises that London is not the place to be any more. An opportunity arises at the rather tweely named 'Otter House Veterinary Clinic', and she seizes it, pleased to have a reason to flee the capital, at least temporarily.
But for Maz, life in the country comes with a steep learning curve. When she's not saving hamsters from the incinerator she's dealing with faecally incontinent dogs and overly demanding stage mothers who don't appreciate her attempts at grooming their show-quality tabbies. It's not just the animals, either. There's the village's other vet practice to contend with, accidentally on purpose sabotage, village gossip, trips to buy the latest fashions from the only shop for miles around - the garden centre... Life out here may not be quite like London but it's far from quiet and relaxing. When professional, financial and personal problems collide, Maz thinks fleeing, for the second time in half a novel, might be her only option.
This book reminded me a lot of Lucy Dillon's "Lost Dogs and Lonely Hearts" and gets an equally high rating from me. Once again, it's a book with a clear focus (animals and country-living) but is not such an exclusive club that pet-free city gals can't dig into too.
As in Dillon's title, our heroine is a Londoner whose love and work lives are falling apart, so the call to move out to the country could not come at a better time. You get the wonderful fish out of water story, peppered with all the essentials for great, accessible chick-lit: likeable heroines, handsome strangers and interfering neighbours. There is a good deal of build up in the story, with enough scene setting for you to feel involved with the practice and its staff as things start to go wrong.
There are a number of names to get to know, but most of these are of the animals Maz cares for, which means it doesn't matter too much if you get them a little confused. At the same time, the humans in the story get a nice amount of character development. So much so, in fact, that it would be a shame to leave them behind as the story end. But, surprise, this is the first book in a new series, so Maz, Emma, Frances et al will be back for further adventures in the future.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book for what it is: a brilliant piece of writing that perfectly meets the needs of the genre. Yes, it's flitty at times, and yes, some chick-lit clichés crop up now and again (a crush on an unsuitable bloke, pregnancies that are only surprising to the characters etc etc) but I lost myself in it quickly and was engaged throughout. I enjoyed stopping off in the village, and will look forward to journeying back there when the sequels come out.
This book is currently available new and used on Amazon, both at discounted rates. Since it's a new release (in fact it's only been out since Thursday) it's not yet banging around online for 1p, or in every charity shop, but it's a great read and I think it's worth the price, since it's the kind you could easily re-read.
A version of this review first appeared on www.thebookbag.co.uk
Summary: Cue plentiful work-related disasters and confusing romantic entanglements