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Paperback The Birth House Book

ISBN: 0061135879

ISBN13: 9780061135873

The Birth House

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Format: Paperback

Condition: Like New

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Book Overview

An arresting portrait of the struggles that women faced for control of their own bodies, The Birth House is the story of Dora Rare--the first daughter in five generations of Rares. As apprentice to the outspoken Acadian midwife Miss Babineau, Dora learns to assist the women of an isolated Nova Scotian village through infertility, difficult labors, breech births, unwanted pregnancies, and unfulfilling sex lives. During the turbulent World War I era,...

Customer Reviews

7 ratings

Loved. It.

This was such a fantastic book. She writes so well, you do not want it to end. Loved her characters, even the bad ones!

Midwives are the historic unsung heros

I enjoy reading about the early beginnings of midwives. I was drawn in to this town and how the women depended on the midwife, despite the beginnings of modern medicine. The characters are worn by their daily life. Having visited the area, I was aware of the difficulties the terrain brought to the town. I could only imagine pre-modern conveniences. Mix all this together, a perfect Historic Fiction novel for one willing to brave the talk of her trade.

I wish it had been longer

"The Birth House" is beautifully written. McKay's novel suffers from none of the pitfalls of the historical novel: historical fact livens the book and sets the scene instead of deadening the reader, and characters are seamlessly integrated into actual events. I wish this book had been longer, and will be looking for more from this author.

I did not want it to end...

As I told the author when I emailed her at the books site, I fell into this book and did not want to find my way out. The minute I finished this amazing story, I wanted to just begin it again. It is a story of a place, a time, a family, a girl and her coming of age in a time of change for women. There are hints of faith, mysticism and controversy embedded in the story of a strong girl becoming an amazing woman. Buy this book, you will not regret it.

A fine Sunday read

I am generally hard on novels, though I love them. This one is truly a good read. It will probably never be a "classic" or a book that almost everyone knows about but it is well paced and well told. The characters are richly developed in a spare, non intrusive, but very effective manner. It is a lovely book for a rainy day in a cozy chair.

Enticing and Inspiring

I received this book for Christmas, 2006, and like most books I receive, I had never heard of this novel. Not without some trepidation, I began to read the first few pages of this lovely novel, becoming more and more spellbound with the story being woven by Ami McKay and her tales of Scots Bay and, later Spider Hill. It is a rarity to feel so entranced by one woman's struggle to find her own in the world before, during and after World War I, and I have never longed for the well being of a character as much as I did Dora Rare. When picturing her, I couldn't help but see her as child, still unsure about the world, or even whether to question the life she leads, but in contrast, a woman with so much intimate knowledge about health, that I couldn't help but relate to her. She is a wholesome character, who made me want the best for her, and her own struggles and strengths, tugged greatly at my heart strings, and in the end I felt inspired at her courage. This novel truly is a piece of art, and I encourage any woman, or man for that matter, to read this book and hopefully they will take as much from this remarkable character and author as I have.

Excellent Book!

I read this book over a weekend and simply could not put it down. It is an excellent story of turn of the century life of women in remote east coast communities and the issues they face surrounding sex, childbirth and the role they play in each other's lives. I would give this book ten stars if possible. Being pregnant while reading this book made it especially appealing. I simply cannot wait for the author's next book.
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