We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.co.uk/access.
 >   > 
Shadows of the Workhouse Audiobook

Shadows of the Workhouse: The Drama of Life in Postwar London

Regular Price:£12.99
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • £7.99/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Publisher's Summary

The inspiration for the second series of the BBC's phenomenally popular Call the Midwife, starring Miranda Hart. In this follow-up to Call the Midwife, Jennifer Worth, a midwife working in the docklands area of East London in the 1950s, tells more stories about the people she encountered.

There's Jane, who cleaned and generally helped out at Nonnatus House - she was taken to the workhouse as a baby and was allegedly the illegitimate daughter of an aristocrat.

Peggy and Frank's parents both died within six months of one another, and the children were left destitute. At the time there was no other option for them but the workhouse.

The Reverend Thornton-Appleby-Thorton, a missionary in Africa, visits the Nonnatus nuns, and Sister Julienne acts as matchmaker. And Sister Monica Joan, the eccentric 90-year-old nun, is accused of shoplifting some small items from the local market. She is let off with a warning, but then Jennifer finds stolen jewels from Hatton Garden in the nun's room. These stories give a fascinating insight into the resilience and spirit that enabled ordinary people to overcome their difficulties.

©2008 Jennifer Worth (P)2008 Orion Publishing Group

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.7 (41 )
5 star
 (33)
4 star
 (5)
3 star
 (3)
2 star
 (0)
1 star
 (0)
Overall
4.9 (33 )
5 star
 (29)
4 star
 (4)
3 star
 (0)
2 star
 (0)
1 star
 (0)
Story
4.9 (34 )
5 star
 (31)
4 star
 (3)
3 star
 (0)
2 star
 (0)
1 star
 (0)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    K yeovil, United Kingdom 31/12/2015
    K yeovil, United Kingdom 31/12/2015 Member Since 2013

    History buff

    HELPFUL VOTES
    13
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    44
    26
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent"

    Excellent book, well worth listening too. The narrator was very good and the stories were heartbreaking, but gripping. Jennifer Worth is wonderful woman with the gift of writing.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Codi 07/12/2015
    Codi 07/12/2015 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    7
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Had me hooked from the start. Absolutely wonderful"

    Great narration, wonderful writing and excellent book :)
    This was my first non self help book I've listened to and I wasn't disappointed, I can't wait to listen to more Jennifer Worth books :)

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    30/06/2017
    30/06/2017 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
    9
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    24
    11
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Memorable, engaging but not a cosy bedtime read"

    If like me you have listened to and enjoyed Call the Midwife, you might be expecting the same sort of sad but ultimately uplifting cosy listening from this book. Be warned - this is not the same book! The stories are invariably harrowing and distressing, though the same thread of love and friendship continues. I'm not sure what they cut out to make this abridged version, was it more or less hardship and suffering? Maybe it was the general everyday life as Jennifer Worth experienced it at Nunatis House, which I feel was lacking in this book. I tend to listen in bed (so may have fallen asleep for parts) but don't remember there being any context for some of the stories, especially about young children, which I'm sure were based on real life but it was hard to understand how these had come to be related to Jennifer Worth.
    Nevertheless it was once again a valuable insight into a completely different world, thankfully one that has long-since passed in this case. I don't regret buying the book.
    The reading is sensitive and nuanced but a little slow, with some slightly strange accents in parts.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    miss emma c thomas 28/05/2017 Member Since 2017
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    5
    4
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "fantastic book"

    fantastic book can not wait to read hear another war time midwife book 5 stars all the way

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Hayley Graham 22/01/2017
    Hayley Graham 22/01/2017 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    41
    24
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Heartfelt story's"

    After reading call the midwife I continued straight onto this book. The narration was extremely easy to listen to due to the soft paced manner it was read in. Description of the people and places again took you into the book as if standing there yourself.
    True accounts of the horrific lives of children in a workhouse to an elderly man ending up in the workhouse building many years later when converted into to an 'old peoples home' are simpy heart breakIng and I honestly had many tears whilst listenIng to this book.
    Very much recommend but with the advanced warning to have tissues close by.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    M. Sulaiman 16/01/2017
    M. Sulaiman 16/01/2017

    miss_else_were

    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    7
    6
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "marvellous story. Jennifer was a true genius."

    wonderful narration. fantastic story. could listen over and over again. Thank you Jennifer. rest in piece.



    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    E Stove 25/10/2016
    E Stove 25/10/2016 Member Since 2016
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    20
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great book"

    Brilliant read from start to finish!
    Recommend it too everyone can't wait to read the next book!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Live, Love, Dance Manchester 29/05/2016
    Live, Love, Dance Manchester 29/05/2016 Member Since 2015

    D x

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    5
    3
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "everyone should read Jenny Worths books!"

    Couldn't put it down. Brilliant memories of hardship suffered by ordinary people. very touching & poignant!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    User from Sussex sussex 03/05/2016
    User from Sussex sussex 03/05/2016

    active dog walker

    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "dog walker sussex"

    A truly memorable book, superbly read. Having grown up in an orphanage myself, it brought back memories which had me in tears. You'll need a box of tissues handy, but it's the most moving book I've had the privilege of listening to.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • Kerry
    15/01/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "great read"

    great history of the workhouses I had no idea of their history prior to listening to this. highly recommended for anyone interested in history or human development through the agas.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank you.

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.