City Girl, Country Vet by Cathy Woodman is a delightful, entertaining read that will relax you and put a smile on your face. It's full of puppies, cats, and the odd-ball small village British eccentrics that I love to read about. There's also a romance, but not a heavy petting, lots-of-sex kind of romance. But the point is made, and it's refreshing. Not all romances hit the ground running.
Maz Harwood is leaving her London job as a vet after her boss/boyfriend decides to get back together with his ex-wife in Maz's bed. Her friend Emma has started her own vet practice called The Otter House in her hometown of Talyton St. George. It's your typical rural English village, and Emma is leaving her practice for a 6 month sabbatical around the world. Maz has agreed to take over the practice for six months to give her friend a much needed break.
Her beginning as the temporary vet is rocky. There's the supremely nasty and crabby Dr. Fox-Gifford, who runs the other vet place in town--The Talyton Manor Vets. He's so thoroughly mean that he will go to great lengths to put Emma out of business. A total pain in the arse.
But he has a gorgeous son--another vet. His name is Alex. Their meeting is a bit stiff at first, but they soon feel a growing attraction that can't be denied--although there is certainly plenty in their way. As Maz struggles to keep Emma's business open and running, she's learning to live in a small town, be accepted by the community, and seriously thinking she made a bad choice leaving London. And she's still uncertain whether she can trust Alex.
I haven't read any books where the main female character is a vet, and this was a highlight of the novel. The inner workings of a daily vet clinic, the skills needed to take care of so many small animals, and the struggle between the "old fashioned" mindset of animal care vs. the modern techniques were all an added bonus to the story. I liked Maz, the cast of characters who surround her in the vet practice, and her struggle to find a comfortable place in a town that is testing her every day.
I so enjoyed this novel! And--it was on my 25 book list for the Read off the Bookshelves Challenge 2013! I would recommend this novel to anyone who loves British chick-lit, a light read, and anyone who needs to brighten their week with a fun novel.
Rating: 7/10. Fun, quick read with endearing characters and an interesting look at a small town vet practice. Add a dash of romance and puppies, and you've got a weekend read that will put a smile on your face.