The Christmas Day Kitten

The Christmas Day Kitten

James Herriot Ruth Brown / Oct 17, 2019

The Christmas Day Kitten Christmas can never go by without my remembering a certain little cat So begins The Christmas Day Kitten another true story from James Herriot s rich experience as a country vet As always the tale i

  • Title: The Christmas Day Kitten
  • Author: James Herriot Ruth Brown
  • ISBN: 9780312097677
  • Page: 207
  • Format: Paperback
  • Christmas can never go by without my remembering a certain little cat So begins The Christmas Day Kitten, another true story from James Herriot s rich experience as a country vet As always, the tale includes a vivid group of characters on two legs and four Mrs Pickering and her three stately Basset hounds, James himself, and Debbie, the self possesed stray cat who mak Christmas can never go by without my remembering a certain little cat So begins The Christmas Day Kitten, another true story from James Herriot s rich experience as a country vet As always, the tale includes a vivid group of characters on two legs and four Mrs Pickering and her three stately Basset hounds, James himself, and Debbie, the self possesed stray cat who makes a special contribution to Christmas at the Pickering house This is one of James Herriot s own favorite stories, and it is sure to be one of yours.

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    About "James Herriot Ruth Brown"

      • James Herriot Ruth Brown

        James Herriot is the pen name of James Alfred Wight, OBE, FRCVS also known as Alf Wight, an English veterinary surgeon and writer Wight is best known for his semi autobiographical stories, often referred to collectively as All Creatures Great and Small, a title used in some editions and in film and television adaptations.In 1939, at the age of 23, he qualified as a veterinary surgeon with Glasgow Veterinary College In January 1940, he took a brief job at a veterinary practice in Sunderland, but moved in July to work in a rural practice based in the town of Thirsk, Yorkshire, close to the Yorkshire Dales and North York Moors, where he was to remain for the rest of his life The original practice is now a museum, The World of James Herriot.Wight intended for years to write a book, but with most of his time consumed by veterinary practice and family, his writing ambition went nowhere Challenged by his wife, in 1966 at the age of 50 , he began writing In 1969 Wight wrote If Only They Could Talk, the first of the now famous series based on his life working as a vet and his training in the Royal Air Force during the Second World War Owing in part to professional etiquette which at that time frowned on veterinary surgeons and other professionals from advertising their services, he took a pen name, choosing James Herriot If Only They Could Talk was published in the United Kingdom in 1970 by Michael Joseph Ltd, but sales were slow until Thomas McCormack, of St Martin s Press in New York City, received a copy and arranged to have the first two books published as a single volume in the United States The resulting book, titled All Creatures Great and Small, was an overnight success, spawning numerous sequels, movies, and a successful television adaptation.In his books, Wight calls the town where he lives and works Darrowby, which he based largely on the towns of Thirsk and Sowerby He also renamed Donald Sinclair and his brother Brian Sinclair as Siegfried and Tristan Farnon, respectively Wight s books are only partially autobiographical Many of the stories are only loosely based on real events or people, and thus can be considered primarily fiction.The Herriot books are often described as animal stories Wight himself was known to refer to them as his little cat and dog stories , and given that they are about the life of a country veterinarian, animals certainly play a significant role in most of the stories Yet animals play a lesser, sometimes even a negligible role in many of Wight s tales the overall theme of his stories is Yorkshire country life, with its people and their animals primary elements that provide its distinct character Further, it is Wight s shrewd observations of persons, animals, and their close inter relationship, which give his writing much of its savour Wight was just as interested in their owners as he was in his patients, and his writing is, at root, an amiable but keen comment on the human condition The Yorkshire animals provide the element of pain and drama the role of their owners is to feel and express joy, sadness, sometimes triumph The animal characters also prevent Wight s stories from becoming twee or melodramatic animals, unlike some humans, do not pretend to be ailing, nor have they imaginary complaints and needless fears Their ill health is real, not the result of flaws in their character which they avoid mending In an age of social uncertainties, when there seem to be no remedies for anything, Wight s stories of resolute grappling with mysterious bacterial foes or severe injuries have an almost heroic quality, giving the reader a sense of assurance, even hope Best of all, James Herriot has an abundant humour about himself and his difficulties He never feels superior to any living thing, and is ever eager to learn about animal doctoring, and about his fellow human creaturecmillan author jamesh


    1. This book was a Christmas gift from my sister one year when i was little (sometime in the 80s). I loved it and still do. It's one of my favorites from childhood and the hardcover copy my sister gave me so many years ago is still on my bookshelf today 💖💖💖

    2. This is touching read-out-loud story about a stray cat dubbed Debbie. There is a sad twist to this tale which was not understood by my four year old. The story ends on a happy Christmas note with a dash of remembered grief. It has the feeling of a true story.

    3. I haven't read any of Herroit's work yet so I can't compare to his famous novels but this is a nice, old-fashioned story about the dear country vet who happens to help out with a stray cat who visits a village lady around the holidays. Ruth Brown's illustrations are warm and wonderful.SPOILER ALERT:This may not be the best story for all readers since the original cat passes away on Christmas day, although she brings her new kitten to the hearth of the lady whose home she often visited and the ki [...]

    4. Please choose me!!!What animal loving child wouldn't want to read a Christmas book about animals? What adult wouldn't. If I had a child I would give them books on nature and animals, unless they only wanted electronics, and then I would send them outside like my mother did me. Of course, some children don't have rivers, streams, or even the woods to play in. We have lost so much.This is a sweet book by James Herriot about a mother cat that has a kitten. The pictures in the book are as wonderful [...]

    5. Unlike my sister Ellen, who could read as soon as her eyes opened, I am dyslexic and could not read without assistance until I was about 10. The great thing about that disadvantage was that my parents and siblings read to me constantly. I have so many wonderful memories of being read to as a child. One of my favourite children’s holiday books was “The Christmas Day Kitten” by James Harriot. Heartwarming and wonderful. If you have an animal loving child (or adult!) on your holiday list this [...]

    6. Charming children's picture book about a stray mother cat who brings her tiny kitten to a country house where she'd been stopping intermittently for food and warmth. When mama cat dies, the lady of the house decides to keep the kitten. Longtime country veterinarian, James Herriot brings us this true story as only he can. It's touching and beautifully illustrated.

    7. Be careful reading this to kids unless you've read it first. It's a good story but you've got to know your audience and their relationship to and experience with cats.

    8. This is a sweet tale - sad, but heartwarming at the same time. It's a simple story, alledgedly true, and is a good tale to read aloud. Our girls enjoyed the book, especially the illustrations.

    9. Delightful way to spend Christmas Day - reading through our family collection of Christmas books. Gift from 1987.

    10. This book was chosen for Day 22 of my "25 Days of Christmas Books" blog series: theproblemsite/book-s

    11. A really lovely, sweet and true story for Christmas time. This book was written by a vet and this was a real story from his life as a vet.There once was a woman called Mrs. Pickering who had three basset hounds she loved, and a little cat visitor she called Debbie who would stop by to eat at her house and visit the fire, but never stayed, she would come inside for a while and then disappear for days. One Christmas day the little cat shows up very ill and the vet (James Herriot) is called in, Deb [...]

    12. 03/16: We own and love. We read this one yearly at Christmas. The boys read it to Midnight this year. He seemed nonplussed, but well, you know cats.Back Cover: "Christmas can never go by without my remembering a certain little cat." So begins "The Christmas Day Kitten," another true story from James Herriot's rich experience as a country vet. As always, the tale includes a vivid group of characters on two legs and four: Mrs. Pickering and her three stately basset hounds, James himself, and Debbi [...]

    13. as a child i remember approaching the familiar school library shelf and browsing for a nice story. "the Christmas day kitten", i thought, "how charming." well i was wrong. wrong, wrong, wrong. and i continue to pay for my naivete to this day. i will never forgive james herriot for taking my innocence and chewing it up and vomiting it all over a cozy Christmas scene. now every time i hear the hymn "all things bright and beautiful" i am filled with anger, because that was also the name of one of h [...]

    14. Even though this is a child's book, I would recommend it to adults as an easy read that will usually bring a tear to your eye and a warm feeling in your heart. If you enjoy animal books or just ones where the lesson of compassion and caring for others is there then you will enjoy Mr Herriot's books.This one finds a stray cat coming to visit with a lady. She doesn't want much and doesn't want to be petted. But one day she comes and the lady has to call the vet in on Christmas Day the cat had lear [...]

    15. This is probably my all-time favorite Christmas story, ever. That being saidMany of you know author James Herriot as Britain's most famous veterinarian (ie: "All Creatures Great and Small"). In the "Christmas Day Kitten", Herriot draws from a true life story about a homeless mother cat who comes to an English farm one stormy Christmas Eve to give birth to her kitten. The story is simple and powerful, but the illustrations bring it to vivid life. I think you would have to have a heart of stone to [...]

    16. The tale is a bit bittersweet, but sweet it is! This one will warm your heart. Harriot has a compilation of children's stories out there that we got from the library once and this one was in it (although we've since purchased this story separately) - I need to find that compilation again as it was quite wonderful. Maybe I should give his adult versions a go again; I read them when I was a teenager but never really got into them

    17. Kate found this one on my childhood bookshelf. I believe this is her very first James Herriot story, an author who is one of the landmark storytellers of my childhood. We both loved the story of Debbie, the stray cat who doesn't accept a home for herself, but brings her new kitten to the safest place she knows when she can't take care of him anymore. The story starts out sad, but Buster is so full of life and fun that it's still a great Christmas story.

    18. I've been reading this Xmas book to my son since he was a little tyke, and it is still beloved now that he is eight. Believe me that is quite amazing since he is embarrassed by anything he liked when he was a lot younger. Very charming story set in the English countryside, written by the famed vet James Herriot. A simple touching story about a feral cat. I embarrassingly cry every time I read this story aloud, and of course I have to try to hide it

    19. A book I liked a lot, as did my children, and we'll read repeatedly. The story is sweet, the artwork is very nice and appealing to children. It is short, but enough of a story/plot to be worthwhile even to adults reading or listening.This is a true story written by a country vet. It reminds me of the sweet moments and memories in life that combined make it beautiful.

    20. Beautifully illustrated picturebook, but the style is definitely adult. Older children will nevertheless enjoy this story of a stray cat and the kitten she brought to "the only place of comfort and warmth she had ever known." Christmas is only relevant as the day the kitten arrived, therefore making it a Christmas present.

    21. This book is too advanced for Emerson. I checked it out for myself.I may be the only veterinarian who hasn't read James Herriot. Until tonight. Very quaint story about a momma cat who brings her kitten into the house. It is sad bc the mother cat does this bc she is ill. Sad. This is exactly why I've never read Herriot. Not quite old yeller but not something I need in my leisure reading.

    22. Absolutely beautiful and heartwarming Christmas story about a cat and their trust of a particular human. One often thinks that cats are indifferent to the humans that love them so, and this story shows us the exact opposite. They may seem flippant and uncaring at times, but they know full well who to trust and who to love.

    23. I couldn't resist the cover illustration! Quick short story about a cat who is all alone in the world, but finds a kind lady who feeds her and provides a warm home. Sadly, the cat returns to give birth and doesn't survive the birth of the kitten. The mother cat, Debbie, gave birth on Christmas Day in the only place that she knew her kitten would be safe. Tearjerker, but worth it!

    24. One of my favorite memories is my Dad reading James Herriot stories to us. This was given to me by my Grandparents when I was five. The artwork is amazing and the story makes me think I am in the midst of a pile of Bassett Hounds. A great story that I now am reading to my 3 year old.

    25. Good book, but may be best for upper elementary grades. The first cat dies. Also, the vocabulary is kind of advanced for younger grades. I read it to second grade and they didn't get into it much, but they did love the part about the cat that "fetches."

    26. I do love James Herriot. The story of Debbie and Buster is one to touch the heart. It shows how even though we may not think we're doing much, the simplest action can be the kindest to animals and creat a relationship of trust and respect.Short, sweet and absolutely beautiful.

    27. I'd say it's a straightforward, bittersweet story about the nature of life. James Herriot's open honesty is what made the read stand out. I thought about the book again today, Dec 18th, since we adopted a kitten yesterday who was found hiding in a barn. We named her Holly.

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