Cheering, mildly amusing reminiscences of Dr. Vernon's first year as a doctor, written with Herriot's rhythm but without his enlarging, enduring charms. As assistant to a retiring Midland GP, he had his share of pesky night calls and routine complaints in the morning surgery but what lingers are the exceptions: Mr. Elliot's (unexplained) vagina or the much-enjoyed conversation between two stroke patients. (""'Gjn hrm kjghk?' asked Mr. Paisley."" ""'Khgj khfg ltejk?' nodded the visitor."") Dr. Vernon is also able to give even lesser complaints like a nun's dandruff or a boy's fleas their proper moment. (The boy's mother protests, ""But we don't have any dirty friends. My husband is an accountant."") And after the chance meeting with his future wife, their courtship adds a little more spice. The anecdotes accumulate and the doctor hits his stride but overall it's a bit evanescent.