Advantages A nice easy read
Please let me point out that I read the paperback version of this book, but Ciao insist I put this review in the Audiobook section. Sorry for any confusion.Before the period in time covered in the diary, Dot has joined the newly established National Health Service as a pre-nursing student at Leicester Royal Infirmary, and became a Research Fellow at a London Medical College at St. Bartholemew's, London, and the London Medical College.
Her memoirs tell us of the period where she has left her hospital training and now must complete her training as a community midwife. Here she has no immediate back-up, and to save the lives of both mother and child, she must use the knowledge she has gained and the instincts within her, to the best of her abilities.
The diary starts abruptly, with no lead into it. We hear the telephone ring in the middle of the night, Dot stirs, and she thinks it's a dream. She is woken by Mrs O'Reilly (the midwife whose charge she is under), stating "Well come on then, answer it, or it will be the chap on the other end of the line who will need your help, never mind the wife" and so the story emerges.We follow Dot as she enters her quest to deliver twelve babies in three months. If she cannot, she will be unable to take her final exam and become a fully fledged midwife.
There are highs and lows, excitement and drama, and one birth where the nitrous oxide (gas and air) was not needed because there was so much joy and laughter in the room.Dot hails from a small town, called Rompton, in Derbyshire, and she is thrust into the realms of the dark, gloomy, backstreets of Birmingham. Her naivety is evident. The diverse range of people astound her - the deeply religious Clarkes' who struggle to feed their eight children but surround them with love, the Macaroni family who own the Italian restaurant, who are deeply grateful for their surprise twins, and the once affluent Mrs Wardle, whose husband decides having a second child puts too much pressure on him, and he leaves her, in poverty, before the birth.
Usually a huge Chick Lit fan, I picked up this book as part of a two for £7.00 deal, in Asda. As a child/teenager, I had wanted to become a midwife. It was the years of study that had put me off. This book appealed to me because of this.The story is set in Birmingham (where I am from) and made me believe I was there. You will too, as the descriptions were so vivid. I could picture the places and the events, and I was lost - I WAS Dorothy Compton!
The fact that the diary ends almost as abruptly as it started, is a slight disappointment.
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|How does it compare to similar audio books?||Outstanding|
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A young midwife's account of her training in the Midlands in the 1950s. A SUNDAY TIMES bestseller.
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