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An Irish Country Doctor: A Novel | [Patrick Taylor]

An Irish Country Doctor: A Novel

Barry Laverty, M.B., can barely find the village of Ballybucklebo on a map when he first sets out to seek gainful employment there, but already he knows that there is nowhere he would rather live than in the emerald hills and dales of Northern Ireland. The proud owner of a spanking-new medical degree and little else in the way of worldly possessions, Barry jumps at the chance to secure a position as an assistant in a small rural practice.
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Publisher's Summary

Barry Laverty, M.B., can barely find the village of Ballybucklebo on a map when he first sets out to seek gainful employment there, but already he knows that there is nowhere he would rather live than in the emerald hills and dales of Northern Ireland. The proud owner of a spanking-new medical degree and little else in the way of worldly possessions, Barry jumps at the chance to secure a position as an assistant in a small rural practice. At least until he meets Dr. Fingal Flahertie O'Reilly.

The older physician, whose motto is to never let the patients get the upper hand, has his own way of doing things. At first, Barry can't decide if the pugnacious O'Reilly is the biggest charlatan he has ever met, or the best teacher he could ever hope for. Through O'Reilly, Barry soon gets to know all of the village's colorful and endearing residents, including a malingering Major and his equally hypochondriacal wife; an unwed servant girl, who refuses to divulge the father of her upcoming baby; a slightly daft old couple unable to marry for lack of a roof; and a host of other eccentric characters who make every day an education for the inexperienced young doctor.

Ballybucklebo is long way from Belfast, and Barry is quick to discover that he still has a lot to learn about the quirks and traditions of country life. But with pluck and compassion and only the slightest touch of blarney, he will find out more about life - and love - than he ever imagined back in medical school.

An Irish Country Doctor is a charming and engrossing tale that will captivate listeners from the very first page - and leave them yearning to visit the Irish countryside of days gone by.

©2007 Patrick Keating; (P)2009 Macmillan Audio

What Members Say

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  •  
    Cheri La Crosse, KS, United States 09-06-13
    Cheri La Crosse, KS, United States 09-06-13 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Something's Missing ... But It's Not the "F Bomb"!"

    If you loved the James Herriot series that began with "All Creatures Great and Small," it will be next-to-impossible not to recognize the similarities in this first of the "An Irish Country Doctor" series. Young doctor with a newly minted degree travels to the wilds of Ireland to work for the irascible local country doctor that the community loves...and meets, perhaps, the love of his life. You may also feel ripples of "Ballykissangel" if you are/were a fan of that BBC series. While this is an enjoyable book, and John Keating does a great job with the narration, this novel fell short of "All Creatures..." and "Ballykissangel" for me. It has charm, but lacks the warmth.

    This book should come with a warning. If you are traveling with children, you may want to choose another story. The "F bomb" is dropped regularly throughout the story, and in some places very liberally.

    All of that being said, I'll buy the next in the series to see if Mr. Taylor warms up to his characters.

    5 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Librarian OK, USA 06-13-13
    Librarian OK, USA 06-13-13

    Retired "Okie" librarian & happy to have found Audible for good stories & staying in touch with new authors & books.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A medical Irish "All creatures great & small"!"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes, I am recommending it to you!

    It is a happy, heartwarming, village tale that brings to my mind Herriot's "All Creatures Great & Small". Some readers might not agree with the comparison but I think it is inevitable. The new (Laverty) & old (O'Reilly) doctors are human medical doctors, in a village (Ballybucklebo) in Ireland, in the 60's. Views of our drives across Ireland came to my mind mixed with scenes from PBS TV series "All Creatures Great and Small". I loved that show.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    I enjoyed both the young and the more experienced doctors. I think Patrick Taylor likes both too, maybe puts a little of himself into them. They reflect his medical knowledge & confidence. This harkens to a time we are all nostalgic for when we felt a personal connection with our own doctor (if it did ever exist).

    Keating did an excellent job with the voices of the educated doctors, the villagers, the women, & the children.

    Listen to this gentle series. You will feel rewarded!


    5 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gregory Wellenius 11-23-11 Member Since 2014
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    "Fantastic"

    I read a lot of action-based fiction with fast moving plots, but decided to try something a bit different. This was a fantastic read that really makes you feel like part of the small town in Northern Ireland where it is set. The characters are interesting, different, and well developed and there is just enough of plot to keep you going to the end. The narrator does a terrific job with all the different Irish accents.

    7 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    S Smith Vancouver, WA, United States 01-24-13
    S Smith Vancouver, WA, United States 01-24-13 Member Since 2014
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    "Disappointing"
    What disappointed you about An Irish Country Doctor?

    Too much filthy language.


    Any additional comments?

    This book was like a James Herriot "wannabe" but it fell far short.

    5 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jane 11-13-12
    Jane 11-13-12

    Tell us about yourself!

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    "Absolutely delightful series!"

    The good news about this book is that is it the first of a series. When I had finished listening, I wanted to know more about these endearing characters. And the series will satisfy this in many ways.

    At first I had to get used to Keating's narrative style. His Irish voice initially suggests the lilt that is often associated with reading children's books. But he creates excellent voices, enjoys the Irish accent, and I quickly found him a pleasure to listen to. As a side point, I found myself identifying the many phrases -- 'saying' -- used in everyday Australian colloquialisms as coming from Ireland. Hardly surprising, given our immigration history, but it was entertaining to recognise them.

    The writer, Patrick Taylor, is an Irish ex pat, now living in Canada -- an eminent medico. This explains the confident presentation of symptoms and solutions. It also explains the nostalgia for people and place that characterises this novel -- the awareness of the limits and the innumberable advantages of the small, relatively isolatedIrish village community of the recent past.

    Taylor's style is perfect for the audio format. He is an ordered and careful writer. Unlike many writers, he doesn't demand we remember innumerable names and complex subplots. In fact, he regularly summarises and thus takes the listener effortlessly along with him. This is the perfect gentle escape.

    Well, I've downloaded the whole series: is that recommendation enough?

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    rmdrescher 02-24-12
    rmdrescher 02-24-12
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    "CHARMING!"
    What did you love best about An Irish Country Doctor?

    I was truly transported to an


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Fingle. He was bigger than life, country - wise, funny and kind. I also loved Arthur, the crazy dog.


    What about John Keating’s performance did you like?

    Handled all the Northern Irish accents well.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    The REAL Northern Ireland.


    Any additional comments?

    Enjoy you trip!

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bayberry L. Shah Atlanta, GA United States 03-04-15
    Bayberry L. Shah Atlanta, GA United States 03-04-15 Member Since 2009

    Breeze

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    "If you like the James Harriott books"

    You will enjoy this tale of the simple life of an Irish country doctor. Nice get away to rural Ireland.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    ME In Tx HOUSTON, TEXAS, United States 02-26-15
    ME In Tx HOUSTON, TEXAS, United States 02-26-15 Member Since 2013
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    "Smiled for hours!"
    Where does An Irish Country Doctor rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    At the top!


    What did you like best about this story?

    All the different characters. Felt like I was in the little Irish village


    Have you listened to any of John Keating’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    None ~ but that won't last long! Every character came to life. What a gift he has for reading life into each one.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Smiled for hours listening, even laughed out loud several times.


    Any additional comments?

    Felt like I was sitting with an old friend, Maeve Binchey. Sweet storyline, wonderful Irish voices. Miss not having any more Binchey books to look forward to. BUT, now have another stack to listen to from Patrick Taylor. A great find.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sue 02-24-15
    Sue 02-24-15
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    "Very enjoyable book!"

    Easy and enjoyable to listen too. Story line was entertaining and kept you envolved. relaxing entertainment.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carol D. Florida 02-17-15
    Carol D. Florida 02-17-15

    Audible started me reading fiction again. What a treat to have professional actors narrating a book I may not have had the time to "read".

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Delightful story!"

    This was a heartwarming, funny, poignant, well written story. I will more than likely read it again in the future The narrator was terrific and brought all the characters to life for me. If you're looking for a humorous, feel good book (as I was) this will not disappoint!

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 11-20 of 81 results PREVIOUS1239NEXT
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  • S.
    NEWTON AYCLIFFE, United Kingdom
    8/19/09
    Overall
    "Loved it from the beginning to the end"

    A charming book from start to finish. I didn't want it to end. Full of humour and observation of human life. Well worth a read.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Jude
    Chelmsford, United Kingdom
    9/7/12
    Overall
    "Go back in time"

    A really lovely story with real issues, light and dark humour running through it This is a throughly enjoyable book. Im now starting on book two of the series of seven. What a lot to look forward too.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Gertie
    OmaghUnited Kingdom
    8/8/10
    Overall
    "I miss my newfound friends"

    I thoroughly enjoyed listening to the 'goings on' in Ballybucklebo and getting to know the inhabitants.
    At first I thought the narration was a bit slow and wouldn't hold my attention but soon it became perfect as the tone of the narrator's voice and the speed of reading added colour to the written word and I found myself planning activities so that I could carry on doing my various chores while listening to more of the story. An enjoyable story full of wit, charm and the deviousness of the Irish. I am looking forward to meeting my friends again in the next audiobook by Patrick Taylor.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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