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Summary

A fascinating slice of East End life, from the number one best-selling author of Call the Midwife, now a major BBC TV series.

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 each other, 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.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio on our Desktop Site.

©2008 Jennifer Worth (P)2020 Orion Publishing Group

What listeners say about Shadows of the Workhouse

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  • Overall
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Brilliant but at times tough

I'm not even finished it yet and whilst it is really good, Janes' story was really tough to listen to.

2 people found this helpful

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Another brilliant book by Jennifer Worth

Book number two in the Call the Midwife series and its as good as the first one. I loved listening to it, Juliet Stevenson reads it brilliantly!

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totally awsome read

well written well read very interesting subject the work houses how folk ended up there and how life was in a time of great poverty and sadness

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Saddest book ever.

This is a must read or listen to book for anyone who still refers to past times as 'The good old days'.
It is the most upsetting book I have listened to.
It really makes you think about our lives now and the luxury within which we live, even just having a hot meal every day and a clean bed to sleep in is pure luxury compared to the lives of a lot of people years ago.
It really is a must read/ listen to book to put your life into perspective.

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Shadows of the workhouse

loved it.really took me into the story.full of information in an easy to digest format.

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This book will make you cry. outstanding

Fascinating insights into the life and experience of a nurse. My mum was one heartbreaking and funny at times.

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Heartbreaking and inspirational by turns

Compelling social history wonderfully narrated and bought to life by Juliet Stevenson. Very highly recommended.

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Amazing Stories

Well written and performed. Although these stories have been told on Call the Midwife the detailing in the book gives you much more insight to what times were like in the workhouse days. Definitely worth a listen.

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Youth and old age

Young people should read this book and appreciate how lucky they are to live in this day and age