Craddock Fitch is a relative newcomer to the village of Turnham Malpas and is keen to make a splash by holding a village show, the best ever, on the grounds of his large house. Committee secretary and co-ordinator of the show Louise Bissett is the spoilt daughter of Sir Ron and Lady Sheila. Although a brilliant organiser, Louise is in deep personal trouble and her growing obsession with the married rector can only end in tears.
When the rector, Peter, and his wife Caroline, decide to go to Africa for a year to work in a mission, they take their twins with them. The village inhabitants whose lives revolve around the church and this family are bereft. They don't immediately take to the woman locum, Anna, who has modern ideas, happy clappy hymns and so forth, but she does fill the church with parishioners determined to keep an eye on her.
The arrival of Dan the new vet causes trouble in the practice. In his first week, he succeeds in losing an important client by his arrogant behaviour. But Kate, a receptionist planning to go to veterinary college, finds she likes his in-your-face approach to things.
It's a time of turmoil for the village of Turnham Malpas.... Peter and Caroline Harris live a comfortable life at the rectory, but their cosy world is shaken up when Caroline's old flame, Morgan Jefferson, appears. He's intent on convincing her to pursue a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity - in America. Plus, it looks like Caroline's career isn't the only thing Morgan is interested in.
The village school of Turnham Malpas is to get a new head teacher. At first sight, Kate Pascoe seems ideal. But when she introduces meditation classes and tree-hugging, the villagers begin to think again. A strange malaise afflicts the whole village and a sudden, shocking death plunges the village into a state of superstitious dread. And always at the eye of the storm is the head teacher: Kate Pascoe.
"NOTHING like a Joanna Trollope or Maeve Binchy nov"
It is Kate Howard's first day at the Barleybridge Veterinary Practice and she finds herself flung headlong into the hurly-burly of a busy clinic and loving it. The staff are friendly and welcoming, particularly Scott, the Australian vet. But Kate already has a boyfriend, Adam. Having initially resisted Scott's advances, Kate finds herself drawn to him more strongly than she intended.
The villagers of Turnham Malpas are in for a shock. With Sir Ralph Templeton now dead, his fortune and title go to a newcomer. It swiftly becomes clear that Johnny Templeton could not be more different from his well-loved predecessor. Johnny soon finds himself in conflict with long-standing members of Turnham Malpas - particularly current owner Craddock Fitch who is determined to obstruct Johnny’s plan to buy back the Templeton estate.
Things are heating up in the village of Turnham Malpas. Now comfortably settled in the Big House, Johnny and Alice Templeton are over the moon at the arrival of their second son. But Johnny's roguish younger brother, Chris Templeton, is visiting and causing not a little trouble in the village. For Ford and Mercedes Barclay, returning to the village after all these years - and after Ford's shameful imprisonment - is a big step. Meanwhile, poor Fran Charter-Plackett has some important decisions to make about her future.
While clearing out the rectory's loft, Reverend Peter Harris makes an unsettling discovery, and a dark secret is exposed that soon sets tongues wagging in the village. Having received a letter from the sons she hasn't heard from in 15 years, local gossip Greta Jones is delighted at the prospect of seeing them after all this time - despite her husband's misgivings. And Craddock Fitch's unruly grandchildren, newly arrived in the village, are causing not a little trouble for the townsfolk.
Kate has been looking forward to returning to Barleybridge Veterinary Hospital as a student, shadowing the vets on their rounds. She thought she had got over her feelings for Scott, the Australian vet, and is alarmed to discover that her passion has not waned. She also gets more than she bargained for in the new arrival at the practice, Virginia, who doesn't seem to have a good word for anyone. Soon, however, Virginia's reserve is forced to crumble in the face of both tragedy and joy.
Kate arrives at Barleybridge Veterinary Practice on her first day as the new receptionist. The setting is idyllic. Kate quickly gets to know the other staff and becomes engrossed in the work and drawn into their lives and those of the animals and their owners.
There is a mystery surrounding the invitation by Craddock Fitch to the Big House. It is billed as a celebration of his business, but as everyone in the village has been invited, it is obviously more exciting than that. When everyone is assembled, they find that it is a lavish wedding reception for two very surprising people.
With the Rector Peter Harris and his family arrive back from Africa, the villagers of Turnham Malpas heave huge sighs of relief, everything is back to normal. But Peter has other ideas. He decides to return to Africa and fulfil his promise of working there for a year. The family he leaves behind is a very troubled one. Caroline's emails to Peter hide the fact that the twins, Beth and Alex, are traumatised by their experiences in Africa and her own distress that they will not share their feelings with her.
It is a shock to the staff at the Barleybridge Animal Hospital when Dan, one of the farm vets, is seriously injured in a car accident. It is even more of a shock when Scott Spencer, back from Australia, steps in to cover for him.
Another wonderfully pacey and tender novel about the Barleybridge Animal Hospital. Laughter, tears, and surprises just 'round the corner make this a memorable story.
It is a shock to the staff at the Barleybridge Animal Hospital when Dan, one of the farm vets, is seriously injured in a car accident. It is even more of a shock when Scott Spencer, back from Australia, steps in to cover for him. Scott slips seamlessly into the Practice routine, not guessing what secrets are about to be revealed: secrets that will turn his life upside down and amend his callous attitude towards women.
The lively Barleybridge Veterinary Hospital is bustling with energy, everyone is working hard to ensure that all the animals are looked after. At the same time, the staff are coping with crises in their personal lives. Rhodri, the Welsh vet, is deeply in love with Megan but is struggling to find a solution to their problems with her invalid father. Kate is worrying about her A-level results and getting into veterinary college.