Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Review: Tell Me Where it Hurts by Nick Trout

Paperback: 304 pages
Publisher: Broadway (March 3, 2009)
Genre: Non-fiction
Rating: 3.5/5

From the front lines of modern medicine, Tell Me Where It Hurts is a fascinating insider portrait of a veterinarian, his furry patients, and the blend of old-fashioned instincts and cutting-edge technology that defines pet care in the twenty-first century. For anyone who’s ever wondered what goes on behind the scenes at your veterinarian’s office, Tell Me Where It Hurts offers a vicarious journey through twenty-four intimate, eye-opening, heartrending hours at the premier Angell Animal Medical Center in Boston.

You’ll learn about the amazing progress of modern animal medicine, where organ transplants, joint replacements, and state-of-the-art cancer treatments have become more and more common. With these technological advances come controversies and complexities that Dr. Trout thoughtfully explores, such as how long (and at what cost) treatments should be given, how the Internet has changed pet care, and the rise in cosmetic surgery.

You’ll also be inspired by the heartwarming stories of struggle and survival filling these pages. With a wry and winning tone, Dr. Trout offers up hilarious and delightful anecdotes about cuddly (or not-so-cuddly) pets and their variously zany, desperate, and demanding owners. In total, Tell Me Where It Hurts offers a fascinating portrait of the comedy and drama, complexities and rewards involved with loving and healing animals.

I expected to love this book, and I didn't. Don't get me wrong, I liked it, and thought it was worth reading, but I didn't love it.

I have always loved animals, and entertained the idea (briefly) of becoming a vet so I thought this glimpse into the behind-the-scenes world of a vet would be exciting. Some of the cases profiled were exactly what I was hoping for. I got to know the animals and learned about some interesting medical techniques. But there wasn't as much of this as I hoped for.

In addition to the cases there were discussions, for lack of a better word, of some of the problems facing vets today. These ranged from the ethics cosmetic surgery for animals, to when is the right time to say goodbye to your beloved pet. I found these discussions interesting and relevant, but not quite what I was expecting. I wanted to hear more about the individual animals! I don't know why I didn't expect this book to include these kind of discussions, but I didn't.

I thought this was a well written account of a animal surgeons day. It was interesting, even if it wasn't quite what I expected. 3.5 stars

Order Tell Me Where It Hurts: A Day of Humor, Healing and Hope in My Life as an Animal Surgeon


Zibilee said...

Sorry to hear this one wasn't great. I have heard a lot about this book and thought I might try it, but after reading your review it sounds like it might not be as interesting as I originally thought. I do like the cover though, the dog on it looks almost exactly like one of mine, only a bit chubbier!

Kelly said...

Hmm.. I was hoping this one was more of a "Wesley the Owl" type. It sounds like it really is about A Day in the Life of....I've always thought that those types of books are the best when they highlight portions of lots of days. I may pass on this one, I like the individual stories more than the minutiae stuff.