I chose Call the Midwife off the shelf of memoirs at the Scottsdale library because the cover caught my eye. It looked more like a novel, and in places it reads like one.
Jennifer Worth was in her twenties in the 1950s and worked as a midwife in London's East End. The area had been hit hard during the war with bombings that left many of the tenements demolished and marked for demolition. That didn't keep many of the poor dock workers and other residents from living in this bombed out buildings.
The author tells stories of women who gave birth in extreme situations but who made the most of their lives for the most part.
Worth lived in a nunnery that the midwives were associated with. The book introduces some colorful characters--both nuns and East End residents. The nuns worked along with the lay midwives, training them and making house calls. At that time, women gave birth at home for the most part and only went to the hospital if there were complications with the birth or the mother's health.
Midwives were trained to deliver babies and care for pregnant women before and after birth. Doctors took care of illness and injuries.
This book has been made into a PBS series. I can't wait to watch it! Luckily it's available on Amazon (see the DVD, right there!) --->
Book Read: Call the Midwife: A Memoir of Birth, Joy, and Hard TimesAuthor: Jennifer Worth