Length: 12 Hours 2 Minutes
Published by Penguin on August 29th 2012
Genres: Biography & Autobiography, Women, Personal Memoirs, Social Science, Women's Studies
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The highest-rated drama in BBC history, Call the Midwife will delight fans of Downton Abbey
Viewers everywhere have fallen in love with this candid look at post-war London. In the 1950s, twenty-two-year-old Jenny Lee leaves her comfortable home to move into a convent and become a midwife in London's East End slums. While delivering babies all over the city, Jenny encounters a colorful cast of women—from the plucky, warm-hearted nuns with whom she lives, to the woman with twenty-four children who can't speak English, to the prostitutes of the city's seedier side.
Based on Jennifer Worth's bestselling memoirs, Call the Midwife is the true story behind the beloved PBS series.
Why Did I Listen To This Book?
Sometimes people in my life outside of the internet will recommend me books. Usually, I smile and nod and am polite — it is important to me to not be a dick to other people. Chances are though, the recommendation is something that is not to my taste. Every once in awhile though, I will get that rare recommendation that I actually take — especially when it coincides with a sale! A person in my life had recommended The Midwife: A Memoir Of Birth, Joy, And The Hard Times by Jennifer Worth to me. As the audiobook is narrated by Nicola Barber, who I love, and because there is a well-received TV series based on Worth’s books, I decided I would take that recommendation seriously, like the unicorn it is, and give it a chance.
What’s The Story Here?
Jennifer Worth, the author, is also the main character OBVIOUSLY in her memoir, but it does kind of feel like fiction because it reads so well. Anyways, at the age of 22 because she has her life together, she moves away from her posh and comfortable home to live in a convent and become a midwife. She feels a calling to it — only she is not a nun. Also, she eats cake. Further, she and the nuns are really all about cleanliness, but they still get their hands dirty to help out in the slums of London. I love this. Anyways, this book, The Midwife: A Memoir Of Birth, Joy, And The Hard Times is a great depiction of what it was like to be a midwife in post war London and endlessly fascinating.
What Did I Think Of The Writing?
Well, I listened to Worth’s memoir over a year ago, so this is a crazy hard question to ask, however as I am committed to whittling down my pile of books that need reviews, I will say that I remember not being disappointed or bored by this book. I actually thought Worth’s book was quite compelling and it made me want to watch the show. There are even bits in here that are harrowing – like when a woman who has had over 20 children is about to have one more and it seems like she will die but then she does not.
I also think that it is amazing just how different life is for us today and how far medicine has come. I mean, I feel like I rarely hear about women dying in childbirth and this book just throws that into clear focus. So, kudos to Jennifer Worth.
How Is The Narration?
Nicola Barber has the perfect voice for this. I mean, it is different hearing her narrate a book that is not by Maureen Johnson, but I liked it. She has a posh English accent and her voice is so melodious. The Midwife: A Memoir Of Birth, Joy, And The Hard Times by Jennifer Worth is absolutely a great audiobook if you’re in the market for a non-fiction audio.
Sum It Up With A GIF:
There’s a lot of talk about birthing babies here.
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