Call the Midwife

Farewell to the East End

Worth, Jennifer

Book - 2013
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
Call the Midwife
The Call the midwife trilogy is comprised of Call the midwife (not included here, c2002), Shadows of the workhouse (not included here, c2005), and Farewell to the East End (this book, c2009). Together, this series chronicles Jennifer Worth's career as a midwife from start to finish, from her arrival in the war-scarred Docklands as a wide-eyed trainee, to the demolition of the tenements and subsequent closure of Nonnatus House. It provides a fascinating snapshot of social history, documenting the East End in the days when there was a real sense of community, when times were tough but there was plenty of good humour and neighbourly support to help the inhabitants through the harsh economic climate. The book also enables readers to follow Jennifer's personal story, as she discovers the amazing resilience of a population still bearing the scars of war, and the vibrant community of nuns with whom she lives and who teach her the skills of midwifery. In stories that are funny, disturbing and moving in equal measure, we meet prostitutes and abortionists, bigamists and mischievous nuns, and see Jennifer earn the confidence of people whose lives are often stranger than fiction.

Publisher: New York : Ecco, 2013
Edition: 1st U.S. ed
ISBN: 0062270060
Characteristics: 321 p. ; 21 cm


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Nov 18, 2014
  • readerpat rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

I have loved all three of these books. Takes me back to my own Student midwife days in England in the 1960's. I was not in a poor neighbourhood like Poplar with all its poverty and characters.
A few changes from the DVD. Sister Bernadette did not marry the doctor , Chummy was the one who climbed up the rope ladder to deliver a baby on board ship and Chummy and husband stay in Africa.

Mar 24, 2014
  • mvkramer rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

This last volume of Jennifer Worth's autobiographical trilogy fills in some of the gaps in the story so far -- but not all. We finally find out about how Chummy gets hitched - go Chummy! My favorite character on page and screen. Sadly, we don't find out about the star-crossed romance Jennifer kept alluding to in volume one, so I'll just have to imagine it. This book is very similar to the other two - no surprise there - so if you liked them, you'll like it too.

Jan 08, 2014
  • kozakd rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

All three books are a joy to read and offer a descriptive and fascinating view of life from the first half of the 20th century. I especially liked reading from the feminists perspective and it is a good reminder of how times have changed. The read is not ruined if you watched the DVD first.

Jul 14, 2013
  • erikas_castro rated this: 3.5 stars out of 5.

An easy, fun read which ties up the other two books nicely. Some of the information can get a little repetitive, but the stories are wonderful and warm the heart.

Jul 13, 2013
  • ser_library rated this: 2.5 stars out of 5.

anecdotal and very graphic; a quick read


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Mar 24, 2014
  • mvkramer rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Frightening or Intense Scenes: Like the first volume's chapter about the young prostitute Mary, this volume has a very violent scene emerge from nowhere in the chapter entitled "Nancy." This chapter relates the incredibly brutal story of a girl getting "surgically raped" (just the phrase squicks me out). Skip this chapter if you're a more sensitive reader.


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