Tell Me Where It Hurts: A Day of Humor, Healing, and Hope in My Life as an Animal Surgeon

Tell Me Where It Hurts: A Day of Humor, Healing, and Hope in My Life as an Animal Surgeon by Dr. Nick Trout


A vicarious journey through twenty-four intimate, eye-opening, heartrending hours at the premier Angell Animal Medical Center in Boston. You'll learn about the amazing progress of modern animal medicine, where organ transplants, joint replacements, and state-of-the-art cancer treatments have become more and more common. With these technological advances come controversies and complexities that Dr. Trout thoughtfully explores, such as how long (and at what cost) treatments should be given, how the Internet has changed pet care, and the rise in cosmetic surgery. You'll also be inspired by the heartwarming stories of struggle and survival filling these pages.


Things can go wrong for a veterinarian from the very first moment you pick up a crisp manila file, step out into a crowded waiting room, and call for your client, because a great deal of peril lies hidden in a name.

The first 100 pages of this book were so charming! I was reminiscing all those years I was set on becoming a vet (I had decided so when I was 5 years old and only changed my mind when I was confronted with the actual process of signing up for university), Trout's day was really exciting, and I was generally pleased with where this was going.

You can probably already see the "but" coming. Yes, there is a but because after the first 100 pages the narrative turned kind of stale. It's not bad but maybe a little repetitive? Moreover, Trout is constantly telling you about similar cases or other connected stories which, yes, are interesting and entertaining but they also muddle the story. I was never entirely confused by his digressions but they did irritate me at several points.

Although this is supposed to be "a day of humor" there really isn't much humor to speak of. Well, let me put it this way: there is humor but it is more of the subtle "internally I'm smiling" variety. Trout is pretty ironic and he has some amusing stories to tell but there wasn't anything that actually elicited a physical reaction from me. I mean, I spent as much time as I could with vets when I was a child and some of the stories they told me cracked me up (Like a doctor being completely flustered when the owner of a dog she was doing surgery on, who had insisted on watching her, suddenly collapsed because of all the blood. It might not sound funny the way I'm telling it here but that doctor telling to me back then was one of the best things in my very young life! You have no idea how much I adored that story and how much more I wanted to be a vet because of it.) and if you tell me that a vet wrote a book with "lots of funny moments around his work-life" I'm - probably unfairly so - expecting stories whose humor warms my heart to the core.

Maybe this is just another case of me having exorbitant expectations but, as I already mentioned, everything but the first 100 pages really did feel pretty stale. The only unconditionally positive thing I can say about this book is that it it smells great! 


The thing is: how a book ends is usually more important to me than how it starts. That's what sticks in my head. So, even though the first third of this book was pretty delightful, the most stars I can muster to give this one are 3/5. As I said: it's not a bad book but I was also rather happy that it wasn't any longer. Maybe I should have read it sooner (I got it a couple of years ago when I was still set on becoming a vet - a friend of my family gave it to me because everyone knew about my future plans back then - but also when my English wasn't good enough to actually understand what was going on. Maybe I simply waited for too long.).


Name: Tell Me Where It Hurts: A Day of Humor, Healing, and Hope in My Life as Animal Surgeon
Author: Nick Trout
Publisher: Broadway Books
Pages: 304


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