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Did she perform at least eight or nine cycles as my mother said, or four or five as Asa recalled? That is the sort of detail that was disputable. But at some point within minutes of what my mother believed had been a stroke, after my mother concluded the cardiopulmonary resuscitation had failed to generate a pulse or a breath, she screamed for Asa and Anne to find her the sharpest knife in the house.In Midwives, Chris Bohjalian chronicles the events leading up to the trial of Sibyl Danforth, a respected midwife in the small Vermont town of Reddington, on charges of manslaughter. It quickly becomes evident, however, that Sibyl is not the only one on trial--the prosecuting attorney and the state's medical community are all anxious to use this tragedy as ammunition against midwifery in general; this particular midwife, after all, an ex-hippie who still evokes the best of the flower-power generation, is something of an anachronism in 1981. Through it all, Sibyl, her husband, Rand, and their teenage daughter, Connie, attempt to keep their family intact, but the stress of the trial--and Sibyl's growing closeness to her lawyer--puts pressure on both marriage and family. Bohjalian takes readers through the intricacies of childbirth and the law, and by the end of Sibyl Danforth's trial, it's difficult to decide which was more harrowing--the tragic delivery or its legal aftermath.
Narrated by a now adult Connie, Midwives moves back and forth in time, fitting vital pieces of information about what happened that night like pieces of a jigsaw puzzle into its complicated plot. As Connie looks back on her mother's trial, she is still trying to understand what happened--not on the night of the disaster--but in the months and years that followed. --Margaret Prior
At first, this book was almost annoying to read. The narrator was telling her story, but would go off on a tangent and interrupt the flow of the scene. Read morePublished 13 days ago by Ally
I really like "Call the Midwife" show on PBS and had been looking for books on the subject. I also have enjoyed other books by this author. Read morePublished 22 days ago by Amazon Customer
An incredible read. The author, as usual, gives us a great story and characters who are alive. This story is told from the viewpoint of a 14 year old girl whose mother is a midwife... Read morePublished 26 days ago by Kelcey
As with most Bohjalian books, this was a page turner. It is one I will recommend to friends and fellow readers.Published 1 month ago by pat
I have enjoyed reading this book immensely. The author spins a great tale. I couldn't put it down. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Kevin Roche
Well written story about family, values, beliefs with characters you care about. Bohjalian never disappoints. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Lynne Foerster