Barry Laverty, M.B., is looking forward to his first Christmas in the cozy village of Ballybucklebo, at least until he learns that his sweetheart, Patricia, might not be coming home for the holidays. That unhappy prospect dampens his spirits somewhat, but Barry has little time to dwell on his romantic disappointments. Christmas may be drawing nigh, but there is little peace to be found on earth, especially for a young doctor plying his trade in the emerald hills and glens of rural Ireland. Along with his senior partner, Doctor Fingal Flahertie O'Reilly, Barry has his hands full dealing with seasonal coughs and colds, as well as the occasional medical emergency.
To add to the doctors' worries, competition arrives in the form of a patient-poaching new physician whose quackery threatens the health and well-being of the good people of Ballybucklebo. Can one territory support three hungry doctors? Barry has his doubts.
But the wintry days and nights are not without a few tidings of comfort and joy. Between their hectic medical practice, Rugby Club parties, and the kiddies' Christmas pageant, the two doctors still find time to play Santa Claus to a struggling single mother with a sick child and not enough money in the bank. Snow is rare in Ulster, and so are miracles, but that doesn't mean they never happen....
©2008 Patrick Taylor (P)2008 Macmillan Audio
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Critic reviews

"Full of stories and vivid characters, the novel recalls a good night in a pub. Its greatest charm lies in homey Ulster idioms....Good, light entertainment." ( Booklist)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Joanna-Bear on 27-03-17

Gentle and sweet

Listened to this in the run up to Christmas on my daily commute. Sweet, gentle story, not perhaps for those who like hardcore back to back action, nevertheless I enjoyed it! Narration was great although mrs kinkaids voice and way she said SO all the time did grate on me a little 😝

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
4 out of 5 stars
By Sara on 18-09-13

A wonderful christmas listen

Any additional comments?

I really enjoyed this book as my month of December listening from Audible. It was a great warm up for the holiday season. The quirky stories are jumble of funny silliness and difficulties of every day life. The reader gets the feeling and mood of Ireland from the past. Much like a James Herriot book but with human patients. Highly recommended.

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37 of 39 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Jane on 08-01-13

Perfect holiday listening

The setting: holidaying on the tropical beaches of the Great Barrier Reef, Australia.

Wanted: the ideal holiday book: engaging characters who are in caring, construction relationships (that is, not maiming and killing) and who live in an interesting community.

The narrator: sympathetic reader with convincing characterisation
Solution: Patrick Taylor’s An Irish Country Christmas and An Irish Country Courtship.

I’d already read and thoroughly enjoyed An Irish Country Doctor and my holiday decision to continue the series did not disappoint.

John Keating’s gentle Irish accented narration comfortably changes to create voices that become intrinsic to each character.

Taylor, himself an eminent doctor, clearly enjoys writing these books. He devises a wonderful little village in Ireland, fascinating medical scenarios, interesting relationships and gentle humour. We are drawn into a delightful world fuelled by people the author clearly admires or dislikes. It is enriched with medical knowledge and nostalgia for world of the 1960s where intuition and care played key roles -- and doctors made home visits.

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8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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