Audie Award Nominee, Solo Narration - Female, 2013
At the age of 22, Jennifer Worth left her comfortable home to move into a convent and become a midwife in postwar London’s East End slums. The colorful characters she met while delivering babies all over London - from the plucky, warm-hearted nuns with whom she lived to the woman with 24 children who couldn't speak English to the prostitutes and dockers of the city’s seedier side - illuminate a fascinating time in history. Beautifully written and utterly moving, Call the Midwife will touch the hearts of anyone who is, and everyone who has, a mother.
©2002 Jennifer Worth (P)2012 HighBridge Company
"A charming tale of deliveries and deliverance." (Kirkus Reviews)
An incredible glimpse, beautifully narrated for the audio, in to the Docklands of London not long after the end of World War II.
Not only is this book a font of knowledge of the history of midwifery and general birth practices over the last 100 years but it is also a wonderful observational tales of life in one of the poorest parts of the East End and how people lived and survived cheek by jowl in appalling living conditions remaining cheerful and turning out a lot of children. Set before the days of the pill and the sexual revolution these people endured so much.
This book is Jennifer Worth's story about her first days of Midwifery whilst living in the Convent and assisting the Nuns to look after the birthing needs of the local population. As such the stories are more vignettes but the thread of the same central characters knits the book together nicely. I learned things from this book I was not aware of and was horrified by others, I shed some tears and cheered at others, but the scales are always beautifully balanced with happier tales and constant reminders of the wonders of Human Spirit. As Jennifer matures and begins to understand this new life of hers the theme, we realise for this stoic breed of Londoner, is love. How to love, even when it is difficult, and this alone endures above all else.
I can only add how my admiration of women has again increased for what they have endured and for helping us modern women to live under the standards we accept as normal.
The BBC have made this into a most excellent series and it's well worth watching, however, I would read this first to get more insight of the true conditions as you will be even more appreciative of the programme.
This was a delightful book. Well written. It covers the time in London's East End pretty much right after WWII. It provides an amazing historical perspective on medical history, particularly that of ob/gyn at a time that was not all that long ago, but seems like another world entirely. It also provides perspective on the lives of London's poor before the economy around the docks collapsed. Oh, and before the pill. It really was another world.
This book is mostly written about different people and stories she encounters, not much about her own personal story. I love midwife books and enjoyed this one greatly. She had a very british accent and at times a few words to understand, but I love the narrator otherwise.
What started as an interesting, and very well narrated, story of the history and role of midwives evolved into a captivating insight into the life and culture of England's desperately poor in the mid 20th century. Despite a tendency to play for the "heartwarming", it was a fascinating look at recent history that was so different than what I'd expected
I love to read!
Culture shock! I had no idea! What an eye opener! No other book like it. You will forget where you are!
This is the kind of book that I can listen to a few times and enjoy it every time..
Its happy its sad its a reality of how the world use to be for women.
The narration was beutifully done.
I enjoyed Chummy. She is like "a goose in a new world"! The environment of Poplar and other neighborhoods is unlike any place she has been, and she adapts very easily and is loved by all.
yes yes yes!
Loved the way the author painted such a vivid picture of the life and times of the characters
I loved chummy, I have watched the tv series on PBS and loved the actress who played her. Although she does appear less in the book
Compassion overcomes hardship
engaging, interesting, thought provoking
none comes to mind
Sister Monica Joan
Will recommend this to friends
It's in a class by itself. I have never read anything like it. It does kind of remind me of the film "A League of Their Own"
I have not but I would like to.
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