The Call

Thoughts  The Call by Yannick Murphy,  Harper Perennial 2011, 225 pages (if you count the cow on the very last page.  Which I do.)

MOTIVATION for READING this now:  My friend Nancy gave me this.  Thanks Nancy!   And it being short and I am on a roll this September, I decided to start it now.   Why pick over Fire Season, another book gift from Nancy?  I don’t know.  Probably because I actually picked this one up and opened it.

WHAT’s it ABOUT: A large-animal veterinarian in a small Vermont town, reports on the calls he makes for his job plus happens to mention other thoughts and stuff that happens to him, his family, and his community.  He has a BIG heart.

I personally think the back cover says TOO MUCH.   I also do not ever (ok, rarely) read the press & praise quotes at the front of a book.  Nancy’s rec was good enough for me.

WHAT’s GOOD:   Our vet worms his way into your heart.  He is a good father and an off-beat guy.  This book explores so many topics and yet is simple, funny and provocative.

WHAT’s NOT so good:   I really struggled with the layout at first.  It is setup as a log of call reports.  He tells who calls him for vet services and what happens, as well as remarks on what he is thinking or what else happens that day or on the drive to the call, etc.   So the format is …   different.

FINAL THOUGHTS:   It is a warm family small-town community story and I recommend it.  I really did enjoy this much more than I expected to after that point 20 pages in when I almost gave up.   It builds and builds to a very nice reading experience.

RATING:   Four slices of pie!   Something Vermont-related:  perhaps Blueberry with Maple Syrup?  and lots of whipped cream.


Beth Fish Reads gives this a glowing review and explains more than I do so do pop over and read this.

The BlueStocking Society – also explains this well and offers valuable critique of writing skill and a lil bit of criticism

Nancy at Bookfoolery  — OOPS!  Has she not yet reviewed this?!??!

Fyrefly’s Book Blog Search for this title.

BOOK GIVEAWAY!!   I will be figuring out how to either make a form to do a nice giveaway or choose randomly from people who comment here that they want the book…   or both?   Nah, don’t have time to figure out the form.  If you think you want this book – you have until Monday Oct 3 at NOON to leave a comment – you get only ONE chance – telling me whether or not IF you saw a space ship, would you tell anyone?  and be sure that the comment either has your email address or twitter name for contact.  


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22 thoughts on “The Call

  1. You’re welcome! It took me a while to warm up to that weird format, too, but once you get into it the book is awfully fun, isn’t it? I sort of reviewed it, but I didn’t say much. Beth Fish Reads’ review is terrific, as is yours. My sorta-kinda review is within my Weekly Reading Update #4 post — the one with the good-looking author dude at the top. It really is pitiful. I should have written more, since I enjoyed The Call so much.

        1. OH SHIT! I will buy it from you. I’m sorry!!! I *did* wonder if I committed to sending it back but then couldn’t remember. darnitall.

          OR… I can go buy a copy and send it to your DIL – twould be fun. I would be glad to – I’ll em ya.

  2. I hate it when book covers give away too much. I rarely read them because of that. I’d rather hear about other people’s honest responses to a book!

    I’m not sure about the format on this one, but I’m rather intrigued to see what it’s like. Also, since we are reading twins and you liked it, I’m curious to see if I will like it too! I do think my sister, who wants to BE a large-animal vet, would find it interesting. So, if I win the giveaway, I will pass it along to her when I’ve read it.

    As for the spaceship: I would tell my husband, because I would have to tell someone, and he would either (a) believe me, or (b) forget I told him and things would go on as usual 🙂 (erinreadsblog AT gmail DOT com)

  3. I’m interested in THE CALL. I would tell people about the spaceship because my conversational topics have been less than fascinating lately and this would certainly spark comment.

    1. I found you on goodreads! and I am now quite curious about Fire Season. I might be a bit – I have about 5 books in line in front of it.

      Thanks for entering my The Call giveaway.

  4. Oh, this sounds wonderful. I’ve had a soft spot in my heart for vet books since the time I got sick and couldn’t read anything except James Herriott’s books and I feel as if they restored me to health. I know what you mean about not wanting too much information on the covers & also about how sometimes, a friend or fellow blogger’s recommendation is good enough. Good job on Nancy’s part!

  5. This one sounds so good! I like quirky and different, and I guess anything happening in a vet’s office would be different for me. The format sounds like a twist on ye olde epistolary novel. Thanks for bringing this to my attention!

  6. No need to enter me in the drawing – I’ve read THE CALL (in my backlog of “to be reviewed” books).

    I struggled with the format at first, too. But, after 5 or 6 “calls” I got into the rhythm of it.

    And, yes, count the cow on the very last page!

    1. Well, you are too late anyway – the deadline was yesterday which reminds me I need to pick a winner.

      I have a backlog of reviews to write, too.

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