‘James Herriot's favourite dog stories’ is something I should have ideally read ten years ago, but it's one of those timeless classics for dog lovers. Herriot makes you believe that Yorkshire is the most beautiful place on earth and that all dogs are friendly and nice to vets. His stories are warm, comforting and almost always have a happy ending. Though I have my suspicions, I want to believe that all his stories are true. He seems to have led the elusive perfect life.
The book is a collection of short stories, each about a peculiar patient of his; though Tricki Woo gets three full episodes in return for the sherry. My personal favourite was Brandy, the dustbin dog. They’ve all got their deliciously simple humour and Herriot uses simple language, almost in keeping with the simple rural lifestyle where the stories are set.
This is a book that's perfect for a rainy afternoon. It's best read sprawled on the carpet with your dog curled up beside you. This particular edition that I read was hardbound, with glossy pages, which is really lucky in case your dog is jealous for your attentions like mine was.
The water colour illustrations by Lesley Holmes are beautiful and generously spaced throughout the book. It's clear that the illustrator has read and loved these stories from the attention to detail, such as Prince's ears- one erect and the other flopping at the tip. The paw prints over every page number give the book character.
Verdict: A book for all ages, moods and weather - if you love dogs.
We recommend a second hand buy, as always - you and your dog would find the smells equally alluring.