In Florence Nightingale’s day, if a person was sick – and lucky – he or she was nursed at home with caring family members tending the bedside. Hospitals were horrible places from which few emerged alive. The nurses were often drunks and prostitutes. Doctors had rudimentary skills.
Thus the privileged Nightingale family was appalled when Florence, who had done her share of household nursing, announced that she wanted to train to work in a hospital. After all, her role was cut out for her: she was to be a decorative, witty lady. A career, much less nursing, was out of the question.
It took many years, but Florence found her calling in Crimea. More English soldiers died of sickness there than died in battle. If they were wounded they were almost sure to suffer in misery, lying on pallets caked with old blood, hungry and thirsty, without anyone to offer them so much as a sip of water. Florence caused a revolution in her insistence for cleanliness, wholesome food, and kind treatment of men, who were considered to be nothing more than cannon fodder.
Florence’s campaign resulted in reforms to health care for millions of people. Although she was in frail health for much of her life, her sense of outrage and her extraordinary stamina in the face of prejudice and almost criminal ignorance make her story one of the most inspiring in history.
Dozens of photographs, posters, and cartoons bring the past to life in this memorable biography.
From the Hardcover edition.
About Gena K. Gorrell
Gena K. Gorrell is not only a highly respected editor, but also an award-winning author of nonfiction for young people, including In the Land of the Jaguar: South America and It's People and Working Like a Dog: The Story of Working Dogs through History. Her books have won many honors, including the Norma Fleck Award for Nonfiction for Heart and Soul: The Story of Florence Nightingale. Gena K. Gorrell has also been a first-aid instructor and a volunteer officer in the Toronto Police Marine Unit. She lives in Toronto with her husband and dog.
“This highly readable and well-researched biography does an excellent job of integrating the social and medical conditions of Nightingale’s time…Gorrell succeeds in separating myth from reality, smoothly crafting a picture of a gifted individual who was also wholly human.”
–School Library Journal
“This fascinating book is filled with little-known facts, photographs and drawings of Nightingale’s personal life, and descriptions of her era’s social mores and medical profession, all of which make her achievements more astounding.”
“Lively and highly readable.”
“Accessible, inspiring, and packed with unusual facts, this book will find its way into the heart and soul of many readers, both young and old.”
–Quill & Quire
“Heart and Soul is one of those treasures that should not be allowed to gather dust on a library shelf. Well-written, informative and interesting, it will appeal to anyone thinking about a career in nursing as well as rouse the curiosity of future history majors.”
–Children’s Book Review Service
“…a rich social history of Victorian England and a distinctly feminist picture of the life of an extraordinary woman…”
“A compelling biography of a woman who, against innumerable odds, established nursing as an honorable and dignified profession.”
“A perfect library reference book, and a great read for anyone interested in nursing or Victorian history.”
–Bookselling This Week - Kids’ Pick of the List
Listed by the Globe and Mail as one of the best kids’ books of 2000
From the Hardcover edition.