Regular price: $21.00

Membership details Membership details
  • A 30-day trial plus your first audiobook, free.
  • 1 credit/month after trial – good for any book, any price.
  • Easy exchanges – swap any book you don’t love.
  • Keep your audiobooks, even if you cancel.
  • After your trial, Audible is just $14.95/month.
OR
In Cart

Publisher's Summary

"Within a day of receiving this book, I had consumed it.... Absorbing, moving, and compulsively readable." (Lydia Davis)

In this affectionate, heart-warming chronicle, Rosamund Young distills a lifetime of organic farming wisdom, describing the surprising personalities of her cows and other animals 

At her famous Kite's Nest Farm in Worcestershire, England, the cows (as well as sheep, hens, and pigs) all roam free. They make their own choices about rearing, grazing, and housing. Left to be themselves, the cows exhibit temperaments and interests as diverse as our own. "Fat Hat" prefers men to women; "Chippy Minton" refuses to sleep with muddy legs and always reports to the barn for grooming before bed; "Jake" has a thing for sniffing the carbon monoxide fumes of the Land Rover exhaust pipe; and "Gemima" greets all humans with an angry shake of the head and is fiercely independent. 

An organic farmer for decades, Young has an unaffected and homely voice. Her prose brims with genuine devotion to the wellbeing of animals. Most of us never apprehend the various inner lives animals possess, least of all those that we might eat. But Young has spent countless hours observing how these creatures love, play games, and form life-long friendships. She imparts hard-won wisdom about the both moral and real-world benefits of organic farming. (If preserving the dignity of animals isn't a good enough reason for you, consider how badly factory farming stunts the growth of animals, producing unhealthy and tasteless food.) 

This audiobook, which includes an original introduction by the legendary British playwright Alan Bennett, is the summation of a life's work, and a delightful and moving tribute to the deep richness of animal sentience.

©2018 Rosamund Young (P)2018 Penguin Audio

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    30
  • 4 Stars
    3
  • 3 Stars
    6
  • 2 Stars
    2
  • 1 Stars
    1

Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    25
  • 4 Stars
    4
  • 3 Stars
    4
  • 2 Stars
    3
  • 1 Stars
    1

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    30
  • 4 Stars
    2
  • 3 Stars
    3
  • 2 Stars
    2
  • 1 Stars
    1
Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Amazingly observations!

I thoroughly enjoyed listening to this book. Having personal experience with livestock added to the listening pleasure. Animals raised in environments suited suited to their natures are truly happy and healthy creatures.
Thank you for sharing this book.

9 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Nancy
  • Lebanon, OR, United States
  • 06-16-18

A short and thoroughly enjoyable listen

Written and read by a woman with decades of experience letting the family's livestock live on their own terms, backed by observation of their personalities and habits. I loved her stories, loved her animals, and loved the naming schemes for the offspring. I suspect that many family farmers have similar stories and perhaps are envious of the acreage at Kite's Nest Farm. I've just recently gotten pigs for the first time of a gentle and friendly breed that mainly graze in pasture and am having a wonderful time getting to know them, so I was delighted to find "20 things you ought to know about pigs" as one of her lists at the end.

A similar book is Jon Katz's Soul of a Dog, which has stories not only about his dogs but also some of his other memorable farm animals, such as Elvis the steer who loved Snickers bars.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Diana
  • Antelope Valley, CA, United States
  • 07-19-18

Enjoyed these observations and stories very much

I have horses, goats, chickens and have raised pigs - and of course, have dogs and cats. No experience at all with cows, or sheep (there's a bit about sheep in this book too.) Many animal-lovers enjoy observing how they interact with each other and with us humans. So, these stories and observations were naturally enjoyable to me. The depth of observations and making of connections, the noticing of patterns, is what made this book an extra special experience.

The author's own narration of her stories and essays is perfect.

I have, and will, recommend this audio book to people who have an interest in animals, but especially to those interested in animal intelligence.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Chewing my cud to share this

What an interesting and gloriously humane way of sharing life with cows. Chickens, pigs and such. I will not look at another farm animal without thinking of this book.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • KB
  • 06-21-18

Beautifully done

Such a heartfelt recount of Ms. Young’s treasured interactions with the animals on their family farm. I do not think this is a book that ALL people would appreciate due to its sensitive nature and ability to capture the essence of mutual respect for living creatures. Those that do appreciate this aspect will relish in the tales told and the anecdotes noted. I will listen to this again. I was able to imagine the stories unfolding as they were told.