Thursday, November 5, 2015

In the Shadow of the Lamp by Susanne Dunlap

Title: In the Shadow of the Lamp
Author: Susanne Dunlap
Publisher:  Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Published Date: April 12th 2011
Genre: YA, Historical Fiction
Page Count: 293
Format: Hardcover

My Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★.5

Goodreads Summary: 
It's 1854 and sixteen-year-old Molly would give anything to change her circumstances as a lowly servant in a posh London house. So when she hears of an opportunity to join the nurses who will be traveling with Florence Nightingale to the Crimea, she jumps at the chance. The work is grueling, the hospital conditions deplorable, and Miss Nightingale a demanding teacher. Before long, the plight of British soldiers becomes more than just a mission of mercy as Molly finds that she's falling in love with both a dashing young doctor and a soldier who has joined the army to be near her. But with the battle raging ever nearer, can Molly keep the two men she cares for from harm? A love story to savor, and a fascinating behind-the-scenes imagining of the woman who became known as "the lady with the lamp."


 My Review:

When Molly was wrongly accused of being a thief she is turned out from her servant job and told that she will never be able to get another job as a servant again. With this news weighing heavy on her shoulders she starts heading towards home, but along the way she hears that Florence Nightingale is looking for nurse to take with her to Turkey to take care of the soldiers. The only problem  is that Molly has had no real training for nursing. She has taken care of sick people and even helped her mother's midwife deliver her younger siblings, but that is as far as, her "training" goes. She wants to help people though and feels the calling to take care of them, plus she needs to help support her family.

This story is an amazing journey of a young girl who is trying to find her way in this world and a way that she can support herself and her family. Molly is a strong girl who not only finds a way to get to be a nurse but also how to be a good one and convince Nightingale that she is worth her time and money spent on getting her the proper things needed.

Along the way Molly makes friends with the other nurses and gets particularly close to one who is also not a qualified nurse and is trying to make a better life for herself. I didn't really know much about the war in Turkey or what happened there. I know that there was a war there, but that's it. This story taught me some about it and I'm guessing told some real problems that were most likely going on during that time as well.

All in all I really loved this story and I can't wait to read Dunlap's other stories. She is able to tell history in such an interesting way and appears to cover topics that I haven't read much about before.

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