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4.8 out of 5 stars
Tales from a Midwife: True Stories of the East End in the 1950s
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
This book - as others have said, three titles in one - is nearly a thousand pages long and yet utterly unputdownable. How's that for value? Yes, I sobbed uncontrollably, laughed my head off and even skipped a bit because it was too harrowing (children in the workhouse) - and yes, it has changed my life. I will be forever grateful to Ms Worth for making me realise how fortunate I am: I do not have to watch my children die before my eyes, my husband doesn't beat me, my family has more food than we could ever eat, I work at a job of my choosing, I sleep in a clean warm bed every night. Right now I feel as if I will never complain about my lot again (although it rains too much in the west of Ireland).
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105 of 109 people found the following review helpful
on 27 December 2010
This book is not described well enough on Amazon-it is actually 3 books in one, and its only once id bought it that you realise it was previously sold as 'The Midwife Trilogy'. 3 books in one-Shadows of the workhouse,Call the Midwife, and Farewell to the eastend. I wish it would actually say this in the description!!!!! Please Amazon, i bought this uneccesarily, as id already got 2 of these books!!! Excellent books, but PLEASE do not mislead us. Its highly infuriating when the titles of books are changed, without properly explaining what the heck it was previously published under.The Midwife Trilogy: Call the Midwife, Shadows of the Workhouse, Farewell to the East End
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 16 March 2012
Got this for an elderly relative for whom reading a book is no longer possible. She is absolutely delighted with it and since she was a midwife in the pre-war years she can relate to the stories.
12 CDs and three books. Get it while it is on reduced price at amazon.
Very speedy free super saver delivery.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 5 February 2011
This is trilogy and boy what a read I couldn't leave it down. Funny in parts and others will have you in tears. I would recommend this to anyone who remembers the 1950's and 1960's. It's hard to remember the poverty folk lived in not so long ago. Jennifer Worth brings the people you meet in the book so alive and you are left wondering why did these things happen.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 7 March 2011
While this is a collection of earlier works, the stories themselves are amazing. I simply could not put the book down. The poverty and conditions that she describes are often heartbreaking and I can hardly believe that this is within people's lifetime.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 3 February 2011
This is a really great book for anyone who loves true East End London stories. It has to be one of the best books I have ever read, I could not put it down once I got started. The author makes you feel as though you are part of her story and takes you back in time.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on 5 August 2011
It's not fair to slate this book and give only one star simply because the publisher decided to make it a trilogy. It should clearly state that it IS a trilogy, I do agree as I nearly made the mistake of buying it when I've read all the books separately. However, the fact of the matter is that all these books are excellent. Reviews are supposed to be about the CONTENT of the book, not how they are published. That is not the writer's fault. In this case, I don't believe the writer can be faulted. Read all of these books people!!! But try not to duplicate your purchases. That's NOT Jenny's fault!!! Thank you.
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on 2 February 2012
This is a compilation of three wonderfully written true accounts of midwifery and life in the poorest part of East end London in the fifties.

I could not put this book down, it was also wrote in such a way that it COULD be picked up and put down frequently, almost as reading short stories.Increadibly easy to get into.

This book is an absolute MUST to read if you have interest in historical life and in medical/midwifery. It is truly in a class of its own compared to similar books, due to Jennifer's graphic desciptiveness, she brings every character and situation to life making it a memorable read.

Be prepared, this book is a deeply emotional experience. It covers many deeply harrowing experiences/situations which we could never imagine possible. Also many bittersweet situations which have you feeling joyous one minute then heartbrokenly sad the next.. (will not go into details as don't want to spoil story)

This book is definitly NOT all gloom and heavy weather, joyous romantic unions happen and the most touching shows of deep devotion between and within families/friends, tales of courage all told with large helpings of cockney humour. Life in a nunnery is anything but dull - the nuns are a mischievious and adventuous group of women, their strong characters portayed to perfection by Jennifer.

delighted to see that Call the midwife is currently on TV as a drama and i will be definitly buying this on DVD. However, the TV show does lack the grit that the book has.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 2 January 2011
A book you really donot want to put down. As a midwife its so good to read a book that you can relate to.
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on 28 October 2011
Best read this year. I found it in a hotels library on holiday [could not get my Kindle to download] This triology captivated my attention and is now doing the rounds of the next female generation in my family. As a child of the 50's brought up in over crowded conditions by todays standards, 4 kids in 1 bedroom, I realised we were living in relevant luxury with a plumbed bathroom and twin tub! The charactures appear in all three books and you have to read to the last page of Farewell to the East End as the author expands on their life stories. The books are well written and almost 3D in your minds eye due to the descriptions and depth of detail. It brought alive stories told to me by my Grandmother about home deliveries during the 40's.
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