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This omnibus edition of Call the Midwife, Shadows of the Workhouse and Farewell to the East End chronicles Jennifer Worth's career as a midwife from start to finish, from her arrival in the war-scarred Docklands as a wide-eyed trainee, to the demolition of the tenements and subsequent closure of Nonnatus House. It provides a fascinating snapshot of social history, documenting the East End in the days when there was a real sense of community, when times were tough but there was plenty of good humour and neighbourly support to help the inhabitants through the harsh econic climate. The book also enables readers to follow Jennifer's personal story, as she discovers the amazing resilience of a population still bearing the scars of war, and the vibrant community of nuns with whom she lives and who teach her the skills of midwifery. In stories that are funny, disturbing and moving in equal measure, we meet prostitutes and abortionists, bigamists and mischievous nuns, and see Jennifer earn the confidence of people whose lives are often stranger than fiction.
Jennifer Worth was a nurse, midwife, ward sister and night sister from 1953 until 1973, working mainly in London. Her first passion was - and still is - music, and she is a Fellow of the London College of Music. She taught piano and singing for about twenty-five years and still sings in choirs all over England and Europe. She plays her piano (a 1904 Bluthner) daily, and is at present studying the entire keyboard works of J.S. Bach. She has been married for forty-five years and has two daughters and three grandchildren.