Oh my good gracious—this book. Hold on while I catch my breath. Three days to read about three days in the life of this woman, Nurse Julia Power. When I started it, I’d been reading light airy reads that made me happy and I wasn’t sure I was ready for darkness, especially a book about the 1918 pandemic. I was over this pandemic, why read about another? Then I started to read and I thought, I can’t be here in this stuffy maternity fever ward all claustrophobic and sick and I felt like I needed air and I felt the pull of the regency romances on my shelf. Then I kept reading and reading and I couldn’t stop. The minutiae of this nurses life caring for three pregnant woman during a pandemic in Ireland is detailed in short bursts of sentences. The author carries you along until you are completely ensconced in this little world and the characters—and the babies! I’ve never read an account about child birth so real ever and somehow so like it is now. Medicines change but the care and the movement and the pace, all captured exactly as it is when you are there that I couldn’t stop reading, again. The author brings the reader though the paces of this life like the contractions of labour. Slow at first, then faster and more painful, and releases the tension with small breaks while the female characters talk and learn and share. So many female characters. All the men are secondary, static. The woman soar here with lives and joy and death. A beautiful book. A terrifying book. I would have wept at the end if it weren’t for having to catch my breath.
These writings are comprised of my creative nonfiction, and books, books, books. This blog is a exploration of the books I read, the people I meet, and my life as a backyard homesteader.