Porter Square Books is thrilled to welcome Karen Fine, author of The Other Family Doctor: A Veterinarian Explores What Animals Can Teach Us About Love, Life, and Mortality, for an event in conversation with E. B. Bartels. This event will take place on Wednesday, March 15 at 7pm at Porter Square Books (25 White St. Cambridge, MA 02140).
Please RSVP below to let us know you're coming and to receive event updates!
Calling all animal lovers! A heartwarming memoir about one woman's career as a vet and the unique role pets play in our lives • “Filled with compassion and wisdom, Karen Fine is a healer whose own wounds have deepened her gifts for bringing animals and their people comfort and peace.” —Sy Montgomery, New York Times bestselling author of The Soul of an Octopus and How to Be a Good Creature
A tribute to our furry, feathery, scaley, and wet family members, All Creatures Great and Small meets Being Mortal in this compelling memoir of one woman's dream to become a veterinarian.
Karen Fine always knew that she wanted to be a vet and wasn't going to let anything stop her: not her allergy to cats, and not the fact that in the '80s veterinary medicine was still a mostly male profession. Inspired by her grandfather, a compassionate doctor who paid house calls to all his (human) patients, Dr. Fine persevered, and brought her Oupa's principles into her own practice, which emphasizes the need to understand her patients’ stories to provide the best possible care.
And in The Other Family Doctor, Dr. Fine shares all these touching, joyful, heartbreaking, and life-affirming tales that make up her career as a vet. There's:
• The feral cat who becomes a creature out of a fable when he puts his trust in a young vet to heal his injured paw
• The pot-bellied pig who grows too big to fit in the car but remains a cherished part of her family
• The surprising colony of perfectly behaved ferrets
• The beloved aging pet who gives her people the gift of accompanying them on one final family vacation
• The dog who saves his owner's life in a most unexpected way
Woven into Dr. Fine's story are, of course, also the stories of her own pets: the birds, cats, and dogs who have taught her the most valuable lessons—how caring for the animals in our lives can teach us to better care for ourselves, especially when life seems precarious.
About the Authors
Dr. Karen Fine (she/her/hers) is a holistic veterinarian who is fascinated by the relationships between animals and their people. A Tufts graduate, she is an associate veterinarian in central Massachusetts, where for twenty-five years she owned and operated her own house call practice. A leading expert in the emerging field of veterinary narrative medicine, she has also authored a textbook called Narrative Medicine in Veterinary Practice. She lives with her husband and son and an assortment of rescues.
E.B. Bartels is a nonfiction writer, a former Newtonville Books bookseller, and a GrubStreet instructor, with an MFA from Columbia. Her work has appeared in Salon, Slate, WBUR, Literary Hub, Catapult, Electric Literature, The Rumpus, and The Millions, among others. She is the author of Good Grief: On Loving Pets, Here and Hereafter (Mariner Books/HarperCollins, 2022), a narrative nonfiction book about loving and losing animals, which has been featured in 55+ media outlets including The Boston Globe, Boston.com, and NPR's Here & Now. She also edits the interview series Non-Fiction about Non-Humans on the literary site Fiction Advocate. E.B. lives outside Boston with her husband, Richie, and their dog, two tortoises, a small flock of pigeons, and a dozen fish.
RSVP to attend our event with Karen Fine!
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