999: True Stories of My Life as a Paramedic Paperback – 4 Aug 2008
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Top Customer Reviews
Having read pretty well every book written in the last decade on life in all areas of the UK ambulance service I approached Lysa Walder's offering with an open-mind but, to be honest, with relatively low expectations. Was I in for a great surprise! From the first chapter I was bowled over by '999'. Its insights into the realities of front-line ambulance work are effective and illuminating but not overly-dramatized. This is no 'Casualty' rip-off as it frequently includes the often-loose ends and unsatisfying outcomes that every Paramedic reluctantly leave behind them at the end of many of their shifts. Not every patient is saved and not every incident goes perfectly. This is, after all, real life. Lysa herself comes across as a no-nonsense, caring and highly-skilled paramedic and every incident she recounts builds up the reader's understanding of exactly what it is that Paramedics and EMT's actually do during their demanding 12 hour shifts. Next time you see them crouching over a collapsed patient in a supermarket you'll have a far better understanding of exactly what it is they're doing with that strange-looking see-through bag and you may even understand why they seem to be punching an unconscious old man in the chest!
But the main reason I'd recommend this excellent and heart-warming book to any member of the public fascinated by the gritty reality of life on the front-line of the ambulance service is that Lysa achieves something here far more important than merely presenting a string of interesting and/or touching anecdotes. Instead she actually educates the reader on a variety of basic first-aid procedures and facts that most non-medics rarely even think about but which, in reality, we'd all be far better off for knowing!Read more ›
That being said, I'm delighted to report that I read `999 - True Stories of My Life as a Paramedic' from cover to cover. The insight into the ambulance service and the role of a paramedic that it offers is fascinating.
As an author myself and a member of the emergency services to boot, I know how difficult it can be to get over to an interested public the sheer variety of tasks that all the emergency services encounter, let alone give justice to the urgent vignettes of life that make up each and every call.
Lysa Walder, however, manages to pull it off perfectly. This isn't some TV drama, this is real life. The heartache, the fun, the gore, the confusion, the pandemonium, the danger, the pointlessness, the timewasters, the desperation, the sheer joy of saving someone's life - it's all here. Moreover, her writing style is such that I felt that I was there with Lysa on every job.
On the back of the book, Lysa asks the question that many of us ask, `Maybe we made a difference'. After reading this book, I can definitely say, Yes, I truly think you do. After fifteen years in the role, Lysa seems to have encountered just about every sort of situation the job can offer and how she has coped with everything life (and death) could fling at her, is inspirational. If I have a stroke, I know which paramedic I would want to turn up!
And finally, to any reader who is looking for an insight into a world that is hidden away from most of us, I would thoroughly recommend this book. Five stars without a doubt.
Funny,sad and true to life. Really enjoyable and well written. An excellent read.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I've been umming and ahhing about becoming a paramedic for several years now, and wanted to get as much real-life insight into the job as possible before I take the plunge. Read morePublished on 17 Feb. 2014 by Linda Cook
Just what you need in a good book, tears and laughter, thoroughly enjoyed it and couldn't put it down. Read morePublished on 1 Oct. 2010 by Rachael Hull
this book provides a brilliant insight into the world of emergancy medicine. great read couldnt put it down. Read morePublished on 1 May 2010 by Miss T Weston
I brought this book because i have always had an interest in the work of a paramedic and this did not let me down. Read morePublished on 28 July 2009 by Lisa
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Lysa finds a way to combine both the tragic and humerous elements of a very tough job. Read morePublished on 8 Dec. 2008 by K. P. Newton