Dean's Reviews > The Midwife: A Memoir of Birth, Joy, and Hard Times

The Midwife by Jennifer Worth
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's review
Apr 03, 2012

it was amazing
bookshelves: book-club
Read from April 03 to 06, 2012

Is my next book club read. it was clearly chosen because the last book club read, The Road, was quite a dark read and it was thought that we needed something lighter.

Having previously read ‘The Road’ it was felt that the Book Club needed a lighter less depressing read so chose ‘Call The Midwife’. Some of you may have seen the recent TV series and by all accounts the TV series was very true to the book. So why read the book then? Having not watched the series myself, I thought the book very interesting. The (true) story is as much a social history of the East End as it is about Midwifery. Clearly the contrast between the East End of the 1950’s with its tenements and dockyards seems a million miles away from the glass, steel and expensive flats that is their today. The book is full of stories of the people living in the East End and the lives they lived. As the book is called ‘Call The Midwife’ clearly a lot of those stories centre around the women who were having the babies and the hardships they faced in life: living in tenement flats, taking care of all the kids and the endless rounds of washing. One of the things that I found particularly interesting was the social support and camaraderie that the East Enders enjoyed with one another – very often the extended family probably didn’t live anymore than a street away. Reading the book made me think about how much we have moved on material prosperity but equally how much we may have missed in terms of socially.

On a final point the book is fully of interesting details about childbirth. One that stuck in my mind was that each contraction exerts the same pressure as the closing of the doors of an underground train. I will bare that in mind the next time I am trapped between the closing doors!

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Reading Progress

04/28/2016 marked as: read

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