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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mrs
I found this book one of the most harrowing I've ever read!
As a baby torn from the womb of one of these unfortunate women !! She then had to work in the 'Hellhole' in Cadtlepollard for a year after my birth to pay for her keep!!!!
I am very very angry that the Catholic church condoned this treatment of these poor unfortunate women/girls!!
I (The Devils...
Published on 9 Nov. 2012 by Kindle Customer

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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Extraordinary, gripping and moving story that needs a gentle make-over
I struggled scoring this book

simply because i would give it

5 stars for the actual content of the story

but only 2 for the way it was put together.

Hence the 3 stars.

I picked this book up and couldnt put it down -

I read it from cover to cover in 2 days

it's only a short book and in easy to...
Published on 19 Aug. 2006 by eatsshootsandreads


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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mrs, 9 Nov. 2012
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I found this book one of the most harrowing I've ever read!
As a baby torn from the womb of one of these unfortunate women !! She then had to work in the 'Hellhole' in Cadtlepollard for a year after my birth to pay for her keep!!!!
I am very very angry that the Catholic church condoned this treatment of these poor unfortunate women/girls!!
I (The Devils Sporn!!!) as we bastards were called spent 19yrs in the care of The Sisters of Nazareth being brainwashed into the Catholic religion!!
When I requested information re my mother I was informed by said nuns that they knew nothing of her!!
It took my darling daughter to hire a Private Detective who found my poor mothers grave!!! My visit to her resting place was extremely emotional!!
My one positive finding was the fact that Mum went on to make the most of her life and enjoyed rearing a further five children!
She unfortunately took the event of my birth to her grave!! I just wish I could have met her to say 'Thank you for giving me life!
Ive had a beautiful daughter who is a delight and three gorgeous grandchildren whom I know mum would have adored!
Needless to say the catholic church has no place in my life!
Justice Must be done to bring the churchs' evil deeds to light!
I would recommend this book to everyone especially Catholics!!!
Eyes should be open to recognise the extreme cruelty doled out to
these poor individuals!!! All in the name of religion!!!!!!!!
these poor innocents!!
We the children will never forget!!
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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Real Eye Opener, 20 April 2005
By 
Ang w "Avid Reader" (Derbyshire, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Light In The Window (Paperback)
I couldn't put this book down and recomend it to everyone to read. The tale of June Goulding and the horrors that she saw at Bessboro Unmarried mothers home is one that is unbelievable. What a cruel world we lived in when unmarried mothers were denied even basic medical care when they were pregnant. Not allowed to speak and with all of their possessions and clothes removed from them they faced a horrible ordeal as they give birth. They are then made to stay at the home to work for 3 years and then have the heartbreak of their children being taken from them.
Every woman should read this book and thank her lucky stars that she was not treated in this way.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Disturbing, 13 April 2005
By 
Margaret Hopwood (london United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Light In The Window (Paperback)
I still don't understand nuns cruelty how dare they call themselves holy.Absolutely no humanity. This book should be read by every woman who has had a child, it makes you realise how lucky you are.I cant even begin to imagine the anguish these poor creatures went through, how cruel to have your child taken from you after three years. June Goulding is a marvellous woman for what she tried to do for these poor girls. I just cant bear to think of the suffering they went through. A deeply moving account. I only hope places like this don't exist anymore.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars the light in the window, 2 Feb. 2006
This review is from: The Light In The Window (Paperback)
having attended convent school,the treatment of those"sinners" does not surprise me in the least,we were treated like 10th rate citizens purely because we were of the poor community,the "money"people were treated well,we were beaten with sticks,or anything they could get their hands on.one of the nuns told me,when i was very little that she could see me in when i was grown up,she said "you will go to england and marry a protestant" and guess what, im proud to say i did.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A little short, 18 Jan. 2006
This review is from: The Light In The Window (Paperback)
This was a little short for my liking, but shocked and moved menone the less. The story is told well if not a little hurried. Although I was left with a feeling of regret that the story was not more indepth. But overall It is a book that I would recommend to others, purley because cruelty such as this should be brought to light.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting and endearing read, 13 Jan. 2006
By 
R. Taylor "Book worm" (Worcestershire UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Light In The Window (Paperback)
I found this book ran on similar lines to others I had read about the appalling treatment of women and children in Ireland by the Catholic nuns/priests and also the neglect they suffered by society and their own families. It is yet another piece of evidence to show just how punitive society was from all sides at that time. It's a shame June Goulding's hands were tied and she could not have done something for them. She did what little she could be offering them a friendly face. But I suppose the law protected these abusers in God fearing Ireland and you couldn't breathe a word against them.
Some of the details in this book are repeated quite a few times just said in a different way. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone interested in this subject.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Difficult to put down.A real eye opener!, 8 July 2005
By A Customer
This review is from: The Light In The Window (Paperback)
I have just finished reading this book,which tells the horrendous
conditions that unmarried mothers were forced to endure,just to
atone for the sin of becoming pregnant outside wedlock.It is a tragic account of how one convent,saw these unfortunate girls. I applaud June Goulding for the kindnesses she offered,whilst risking her own job .Sadly these stories are many more,I would recomend any
woman to read this spare a thought for those who suffered,were humiliated and often not be able to form guilt free relationships.
My feeling is that the "daliance"that can lead to pregnancy is bought about by two people and back in the 1950's I would guess that the man would often take the lead or at least know the consequencesof the act,yet the women were the ones to suffer,in this case not just the resulting pregnancy and labour,but the further degradation by another woman who would be looked to for cormfort and compassion by the very nature of her calling.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Extraordinary, gripping and moving story that needs a gentle make-over, 19 Aug. 2006
This review is from: The Light In The Window (Paperback)
I struggled scoring this book

simply because i would give it

5 stars for the actual content of the story

but only 2 for the way it was put together.

Hence the 3 stars.

I picked this book up and couldnt put it down -

I read it from cover to cover in 2 days

it's only a short book and in easy to manage chapters

I love the voice in this book

I could almost hear June's soft Irish accent speak

and that seems so perfect as it reflects her caring nursing personality as well.

I sobbed thru some of the cruelty especially by the sister and felt moved by the plight of the women.

Yeah, me too - I also wonder why June waited so long to tell the story but then i guess if she was working there 50 years she's been too busy? At first I did also wonder how a woman so determined and so kind didnt report the sister but then having done some research it appears that the evil treatment inflicted by the Sister was normal for that time and that indeed it was June that was extraordinary, perhaps she didnt feel it prudent to take the system on.

But despite the content of this book being gripping

the writting wasnt as endearing.

There were often sentences that seemed random

and i wondered if the book had been heavily edited maybe for legal reasons or if the publishers had merely asked for some more information and it had been badly slotted in -

who knows.

In parts we would be engrossed in the action only to have it all tied up in a short final paragraph!

The publishers should have used a ghost writer to tidy this book up because it has enormous potential and the story in itself is worthy of a blockbuster film.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book - this is a riveting read, 12 July 2008
By 
J. Kisseih (Surrey, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Light In The Window (Paperback)
June Goulding tells the story of her life as a midwife in a home for unmarried mothers in 1950s Ireland with the utmost compassion and despite the rules and regulations by the spinster women who ran the home she had her own unique rebellious spirit in helping these poor girls.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The light in the window, 26 May 2013
By 
Clare O'Beara - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Light In The Window (Paperback)
I had not heard of this book when it was first published, recently got the reissue with notes at the end of people who contacted June after publication.
This excellent book casts light on a home for unmarried mothers run by nuns in Cork in the 1950s. The young nurse midwife who came was the only scrap of humanity the girls ever met. The Sister in charge forbade screaming, insisted on hard physical labour around a farm every day from girls about to deliver, forbade stitching or calling a doctor or ether. Girls arrived in deepest shame or scandal, escorted by family or alone, within a couple of months of birth, sometimes due that day. Mediaeval style physical penances were required and the girls were obliged to stay for three years after the birth, unpaid labour every day, tarring roads, breastfeeding and weaning, until the child was sold to adoptive parents, often in America. To get an early release, called 'the free leg,' required a payment of a hundred pounds. But the baby had to be left. This slavery was condoned quietly by everyone who knew, but few people knew the reality as 'the girls were looked after and the babies found good homes' and nobody enquired more deeply.
One young woman had nowhere to go afterwards so she stayed on as a helper, unpaid for thirty years.
There was no attempt to bring the men responsible to book. One young girl was taken advantage of by 'an Englishman' who got her drunk; one schoolgirl by a farmhand on her parents' farm, who couldn't be fired because he was a good worker. If the girl's mother had told her husband, he would have taken his shotgun and blown the farmhand's head off, so there was some sense of outrage. Mostly the girls were young but four women in their forties also came, two aged forty-seven, who had thought they couldn't 'get caught'. One man was responsible for five girls in the same town being pregnant. Everyone blamed the girls.

Contrasted is the lovely romance between June the nurse and her fiancé, a dentist, and their nights out and trips and her plans to marry. The freedom she had to go live her life was wonderful by comparison. When she returned each time if she saw a light in the window it meant her services were required, someone had gone into labour. The girls all concealed labour during the day when the nuns were around, preferring June's gentle treatment. June's sense of outrage was balanced by the fact that she could change nothing.

An equally good read, though less harsh, is 'Dropping The Habit' by a former nun who came out of a convent where she had been treated as unpaid labour for decades.
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The Light In The Window
The Light In The Window by June Goulding (Paperback - 17 Mar. 2005)
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