From Publishers Weekly
In rational, compassionate and honest language, Wicklund chronicles more than 20 years as a medical doctor and women's health provider with a "fundamental commitment to patients and to the cause of keeping reproductive rights safe and legal," a commitment that would put herself and her family under direct threat from anti-abortion extremists, and cause her to adopt disguises and even a personal bodyguard in order to continue her work. Wicklund's story is gripping and poignant, not only for its numerous personal accounts-including Wicklund's own experience terminating her pregnancy-but in her consideration of current and proposed reproductive rights legislation; in addition to eye-opening statistics ("In 2006, 87% of counties in the United States had no abortion provider"), Wicklund provides a fine resource guide for further reading. Though a digression concerning her parents' unrelated health issues derails the narrative, and she fails to discuss abortion law in other developed countries, this topical memoir will make a compelling read for anyone interested in women's health and reproductive rights in America.
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"This Common Secret
is a riveting and heartbreaking memoir from the front lines of the abortion wars. Susan Wicklund is a true American hero. You will be amazed, enraged and inspired by her story." -- Maryanne Vollers, author of Ghosts of Mississippi, Lone Wolf, and co-author of Ice Bound: A Doctor's Incredible Battle for Survival at the South Pole, August 1, 2007
"Gripping, deeply moving . . . a compelling memoir." -- Christian Science Monitor, February 25, 2008
"Ms. Wicklund's book, This Common Secret
, is a rarity in this day and age - the odyssey of a courageous woman who refuses to compromise her morality and is willing to pay an enormous price for acting on her compassion and sense of justice without ever stooping to a flicker of self-pity. This book is at times funny, often horrifying, and, like Ms. Wicklund herself, always inspiring." -- Margot Kidder
"Through [Wicklund's] story is harrowing, the stories of the women she serves are becoming even more so as the number of obstacles blocking their reproductive choices increase, thanks to ever more conservative legislators." -- Booklist, December 1, 2007
"Too often the abortion debate is framed in abstractions about the `unborn' and their rights. This Common Secret
puts flesh and blood on the issue and gives it a woman's face. Thank you, Susan Wicklund, both for your amazing courage as an abortion provider and for your wonderful honesty and openness as a writer." -- Barbara Ehrenreich