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How does it feel to confront a pandemic from the inside, one patient at a time? To bridge the gulf between a perilously unwell patient in quarantine and their distraught family outside? To be uncertain whether the protective equipment you wear fits the science or the size of the government stockpile? To strive your utmost to maintain your humanity even while barricaded behind visors and masks? Rachel is a palliative care doctor who cared for the most gravely unwell patients on the Covid-19 wards of her hospital. Amid the tensions, fatigue and rising death toll, she witnessed the courage of patients and NHS staff alike in conditions of unprecedented adversity. For all the bleakness and fear, she found that moments that could stop you in your tracks abounded. People who rose to their best, upon facing the worst, as a microbe laid waste to the population. Her new book, Breathtaking, is an unflinching insider's account of medicine in the time of coronavirus. Drawing on testimony from nursing, acute and intensive care colleagues - as well as, crucially, her patients - Clarke argue that this age of contagion has inspired a profound attentiveness to - and gratitude for - what matters most in life.
In Dear Life, palliative care specialist Dr. Rachel Clarke recounts her professional and personal journey to understand not the end of life, but life at its end. Death was conspicuously absent during Rachel's medical training. Instead, her education focused entirely on learning to save lives, and was left wanting when it came to helping patients and their families face death. She came to specialize in palliative medicine because it is the one specialty in which the quality, not quantity of life truly matters. In the same year she started to work in a hospice, Rachel was forced to face tragedy in her own life when her father was diagnosed with terminal cancer. He'd inspired her to become a doctor, and the stories he had told her as a child proved formative when it came to deciding what sort of medicine she would practice. But for all her professional exposure to dying, she remained a grieving daughter. Dear Life follows how Rachel came to understand—as a child, as a doctor, as a human being—how best to help patients in the final stages of life, and what that might mean in practice.
Book Your Life In My Hands - a Junior Doctor's Story Description/Summary:
'I am a junior doctor. It is 4 a.m. I have run arrest calls, treated life-threatening bleeding, held the hand of a young woman dying of cancer, scuttled down miles of dim corridors wanting to sob with sheer exhaustion, forgotten to eat, forgotten to drink, drawn on every fibre of strength that I possess to keep my patients safe from harm.' How does it feel to be spat out of medical school into a world of pain, loss and trauma that you feel wholly ill-equipped to handle? To be a medical novice who makes decisions which - if you get them wrong - might forever alter, or end, a person's life? To toughen up the hard way, through repeated exposure to life-and-death situations, until you are finally a match for them? In this heartfelt, deeply personal account of life as a junior doctor in today's health service, former television journalist turned doctor, Rachel Clarke, captures the extraordinary realities of ordinary life on the NHS front line. From the historic junior doctor strikes of 2016 to the 'humanitarian crisis' declared by the Red Cross, the overstretched health service is on the precipice, calling for junior doctors to draw on extraordinary reserves of what compelled them into medicine in the first place - and the value the NHS can least afford to lose - kindness. Your Life in My Hands is at once a powerful polemic on the systematic degradation of Britain's most vital public institution, and a love letter of optimism and hope to that same health service and those who support it. This extraordinary memoir offers a glimpse into a life spent between the operating room and the bedside, the mortuary and the doctors' mess, telling powerful truths about today's NHS frontline, and capturing with tenderness and humanity the highs and lows of a new doctor's first steps onto the wards in the context of a health service at breaking point - and what it means to be entrusted with carrying another's life in your hands. 'Eloquent and moving' - Henry Marsh 'There have been many books written by young doctors... but none comes close to Clarke's' - Sunday Times 'From the very heart of the NHS comes this brilliant insight into the continuing crisis in the health service. Rachel Clarke writes as the accomplished journalist she once was and as the leading junior doctor she now is - writing with humanity and compassion that at times reduced me to tears.' - Jon Snow, Channel 4 News 'Dr Clarke has written a blockbuster, a page-turner, a tear-jerker. This is a "from-the-heart" front-line account of the human cost of the wanton erosion of a magnificent ideal - healthcare free at the point of need, funded through public taxation, available to all - made real in the UK for near 70 years. It is a love-song for the wonderful National Health Service that has embodied - to an extent equalled nowhere in the world - the principle that healthcare is not a commodity but a great duty of state.' - Prof. Neena Modi, President of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health 'A powerful account of life on the NHS frontline. If only Theresa May and Jeremy Hunt could see the passion behind the people in the NHS, they might stop treating them as the enemy, and understand that without them we don't have an NHS worth the name.' - Alastair Campbell
Book British Summer Time Begins Description/Summary:
British Summer Time Begins is about summer holidays of the mid-twentieth century and how they were spent, as recounted to Ysenda Maxtone-Graham in vividly remembered detail by people who were there. Through this prism, it paints a revealing portrait of twentieth-century Britain in summertime: how we were, how families functioned, what houses and gardens and streets were like, what journeys were like, and what people did all day in their free time. It explores their expectations, hopes, fears and habits, the rules or lack of rules under which they lived, their happiness and sadness, their sense of being treasured or neglected - all within living memory, from pre-war summers to the late 1970s. Ysenda takes us back to the long stretch of time from the last days of June till the early days of September - those months when the term-time self was cast off and you could become the person you really were, and you had (if you were lucky) enough hours in the endless succession of days to become good at the things that would later define your adulthood. The 'showpiece' part of the summer holidays was 'the summer holiday', when families took off to the seaside, or to grandparents' houses teeming with cousins, or on early package holidays to France or Spain, siblings wedged into the back of small cars, roof-racks clattering, mothers preparing picnics. British Summer Time Begins is as much about the long weeks either side of that holiday as the trip itself: the weeks when nothing much officially happened, boredom often lurked nearby, and you vanished for hours on end, nobody much knowing or even caring where you were. Could it be that those unscheduled days were actually the most important and formative of your life? From the author of the beloved Terms & Conditions, British Summer Time Begins is a delightful, nostalgic and joyous celebration of summers.
The first ever in-depth study of the role played by the nobility in the Nazi rise to power in interwar Germany, this is a fascinating portrait of an aristocratic world teetering on the edge of self-destruction.
Bridget Christie is a stand-up comedian, idiot and feminist. On the 30th of April 2012, a man farted in the Women’s Studies Section of a bookshop and it changed her life forever. A Book For Her details Christie’s twelve years of anonymous toil in the bowels of stand-up comedy and the sudden epiphany that made her, unbelievably, one of the most critically acclaimed British stand-up comedians this decade, drawing together the threads that link a smelly smell in the women’s studies section to the global feminist struggle. Find out how nice Peter Stringfellow’s fish tastes, how yoghurt advertising perpetuates rape myths, and how Emily Bronte used a special ladies’ pen to write Wuthering Heights. If you’re interested in comedy and feminism, then this is definitely the book for you. If you hate both then I’d probably give it a miss. “Christie is adept at turning on a sixpence between being comical, or serious, or both at once, and at pricking her own earnestness.” Telegraph ‘Christie piles derision and tomfoolery upon everyday sexism, while never pretending that jokes alone will solve the problem.’ Guardian
In 1945, Eddy Sackville-West, Desmond Shawe-Taylor and Eardley Knollys - writers for the New Statesman and a National Trust administrator - purchased Long Crichel House, an old rectory with no electricity and an inadequate water supply. In this improbable place, the last English literary salon began. Quieter and less formal than the famed London literary salons, Long Crichel became an idiosyncratic experiment in communal living. Sackville-West, Shawe-Taylor and Knollys - later joined by the literary critic Raymond Mortimer - became members of one another's surrogate families and their companionship became a stimulus for writing, for them and their guests. Long Crichel's visitors' book reveals a Who's Who of the arts in post-war Britain - Nancy Mitford, Benjamin Britten, Laurie Lee, Cyril Connolly, Somerset Maugham, E.M. Forster, Cecil Beaton, Vita Sackville-West and Harold Nicolson - who were attracted by the good food, generous quantities of drink and excellent conversation. For Frances Partridge and James Lees-Milne, two of the twentieth century's finest diarists, Long Crichel became a second home and their lives became bound up with the house. Yet there was to be more to the story of the house than what critics variously referred to as a group of 'hyphenated gentlemen-aesthetes' and a 'prose factory'. In later years the house and its inhabitants were to weather the aftershocks of the Crichel Down Affair, the Wolfenden Report and the AIDS crisis. The story of Long Crichel is also part of the development of the National Trust and other conservation movements. Through the lens of Long Crichel, archivist and writer Simon Fenwick tells a wider story of the great upheaval that took place in the second half of the twentieth century. Intimate and revealing, he brings to life Long Crichel's golden, gossipy years and, in doing so, unveils a missing link in English literary and cultural history.
Book The Wonder Book of Geometry Description/Summary:
David Acheson transports us into the world of geometry, one of the oldest branches of mathematics. He describes its history, from ancient Greece to the present day, and its emphasis on proofs. With its elegant deduction and practical applications, he demonstrates how geometry offers the quickest route to the spirit of mathematics at its best.
'Grimly funny and superbly written, with a twist on every page' – Hilary Mantel 'Delightfully compulsive and unforgettably original' – Hadley Freeman Shortlisted for the Duff Cooper Prize 2021 Aunt Munca never told the truth about anything. Calling herself after the mouse in a Beatrix Potter story, she was already a figure of mystery during the childhood of her nephew Ferdinand Mount. Half a century later, a series of startling revelations sets him off on a tortuous quest to find out who this extraordinary millionairess really was. What he discovers is shocking and irretrievably sad, involving multiple deceptions, false identities and abandonments. The story leads us from the back streets of Sheffield at the end of the Victorian age to the highest echelons of English society between the wars. Kiss Myself Goodbye is both an enchanting personal memoir like the author's bestselling Cold Cream, and a voyage into a vanished moral world. An unconventional tale of British social history told backwards, its cryptic and unforgettable protagonist Munca joins the ranks of memorable aunts in literature, from Dickens' Betsy Trotwood to Graham Greene's Aunt Augusta.
After suffering a trauma from which he nearly died, Dr. Ross Zbar expected the profession to which he had dedicated his life to provide him with the utmost level of care. But his journey back to health within Western medicine proved to be a nightmare he never expected. This book is his compelling story as well as a critical call for massive change.
Book Coronavirus: A Book for Children Description/Summary:
What is the coronavirus, and why is everyone talking about it? Engagingly illustrated by Axel Scheffler, this approachable and timely book helps answer these questions and many more, providing children aged 5-10 and their parents with clear and accessible explanations about the coronavirus and its effects - both from a health perspective and the impact it has on a family’s day-to-day life. With input from expert consultant Professor Graham Medley of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, as well as advice from teachers and child psychologists, this is a practical and informative resource to help explain the changes we are currently all experiencing. The book is free to read and download, but Nosy Crow would like to encourage readers, should they feel in a position to, to make a donation to: https://www.nhscharitiestogether.co.uk/
THE TOP TEN SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER The author of the celebrated bestseller The English and Their History puts Brexit in its historical context Geography comes before history. Islands cannot have the same history as continental plains. The United Kingdom is a European country, but not the same kind of European country as Germany, Poland or Hungary. For most of the 150 centuries during which Britain has been inhabited it has been on the edge, culturally and literally, of mainland Europe. In this succinct book, Tombs shows that the decision to leave the EU is historically explicable - though not made historically inevitable - by Britain's very different historical experience, especially in the twentieth century, and because of our more extensive and deeper ties outside Europe. He challenges the orthodox view that Brexit was due solely to British or English exceptionalism: in choosing to leave the EU, the British, he argues, were in many ways voting as typical Europeans.
"Delicious . . . richly riveting . . . The Vacationers offers all the delights of a fluffy, read-it-with-sunglasses-on-the-beach read, made substantial by the exceptional wit, insight, intelligence and talents of its author.”—People (four stars) An irresistible, deftly observed novel from the New York Times-bestselling author of Modern Lovers, about the secrets, joys, and jealousies that rise to the surface over the course of an American family’s two-week stay in Mallorca. For the Posts, a two-week trip to the Balearic island of Mallorca with their extended family and friends is a celebration: Franny and Jim are observing their thirty-fifth wedding anniversary, and their daughter, Sylvia, has graduated from high school. The sunlit island, its mountains and beaches, its tapas and tennis courts, also promise an escape from the tensions simmering at home in Manhattan. But all does not go according to plan: over the course of the vacation, secrets come to light, old and new humiliations are experienced, childhood rivalries resurface, and ancient wounds are exacerbated. This is a story of the sides of ourselves that we choose to show and those we try to conceal, of the ways we tear each other down and build each other up again, and the bonds that ultimately hold us together. With wry humor and tremendous heart, Emma Straub delivers a richly satisfying story of a family in the midst of a maelstrom of change, emerging irrevocably altered yet whole.
Five years in the writing by one of science fiction's most honored authors, Doomsday Book is a storytelling triumph. Connie Willis draws upon her understanding of the universalities of human nature to explore the ageless issues of evil, suffering and the indomitable will of the human spirit. For Kivrin, preparing an on-site study of one of the deadliest eras in humanity's history was as simple as receiving inoculations against the diseases of the fourteenth century and inventing an alibi for a woman traveling alone. For her instructors in the twenty-first century, it meant painstaking calculations and careful monitoring of the rendezvous location where Kivrin would be received. But a crisis strangely linking past and future strands Kivrin in a bygone age as her fellows try desperately to rescue her. In a time of superstition and fear, Kivrin—barely of age herself—finds she has become an unlikely angel of hope during one of history's darkest hours. Praise for Doomsday Book “A stunning novel that encompasses both suffering and hope. . . . The best work yet from one of science fiction’s best writers.”—The Denver Post “Splendid work—brutal, gripping and genuinely harrowing, the product of diligent research, fine writing and well-honed instincts, that should appeal far beyond the normal science-fiction constituency.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review) “The world of 1348 burns in the mind’s eye, and every character alive that year is a fully recognized being. . . . It becomes possible to feel . . . that Connie Willis did, in fact, over the five years Doomsday Book took her to write, open a window to another world, and that she saw something there.”—The Washington Post Book World
In the US edition of this international bestseller, Adam Kay channels Henry Marsh and David Sedaris to tell us the "darkly funny" (The New Yorker) -- and sometimes horrifying -- truth about life and work in a hospital. Welcome to 97-hour weeks. Welcome to life and death decisions. Welcome to a constant tsunami of bodily fluids. Welcome to earning less than the hospital parking meter. Wave goodbye to your friends and relationships. Welcome to the life of a first-year doctor. Scribbled in secret after endless days, sleepless nights and missed weekends, comedian and former medical resident Adam Kay's This Is Going to Hurt provides a no-holds-barred account of his time on the front lines of medicine. Hilarious, horrifying and heartbreaking by turns, this is everything you wanted to know -- and more than a few things you didn't -- about life on and off the hospital ward. And yes, it may leave a scar.
The first history of the western polymath, from the fifteenth century to the present day From Leonardo Da Vinci to John Dee and Comenius, from George Eliot to Oliver Sacks and Susan Sontag, polymaths have moved the frontiers of knowledge in countless ways. But history can be unkind to scholars with such encyclopaedic interests. All too often these individuals are remembered for just one part of their valuable achievements. In this engaging, erudite account, renowned cultural historian Peter Burke argues for a more rounded view. Identifying 500 western polymaths, Burke explores their wide-ranging successes and shows how their rise matched a rapid growth of knowledge in the age of the invention of printing, the discovery of the New World and the Scientific Revolution. It is only more recently that the further acceleration of knowledge has led to increased specialisation and to an environment that is less supportive of wide-ranging scholars and scientists. Spanning the Renaissance to the present day, Burke changes our understanding of this remarkable intellectual species.