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Summary

Bloomsbury presents Frontline Midwife by Anna Kent, read by Anna Kent.

This is a story of women in crisis, seen through the eyes of a remarkable midwife.

My own suffering, my own loneliness, was a fair price to pay for the lives we’d saved. And now here I am, training to be a midwife so that next time, I can make it better.

Anna Kent has delivered babies in war zones, caring for the most vulnerable women in the most vulnerable places in the world. At 26 years old, not yet a fully trained midwife, she delivered a baby in a tropical storm by the light of a headtorch; the following year, she would be responsible for the female health of 30,000 Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh. But returning to the UK to work for the NHS, she soon learned that even at home the right to a safe birth was impossible to take for granted.

In Frontline Midwife, Kent shares her extraordinary experiences as a nurse, midwife and mother, illuminating the lives of women that are irreparably affected by compromised access to healthcare. This is at once an astonishing story of the realities of frontline humanitarian work and a powerful reminder of the critical, life-giving work of nurses and doctors at home and around the world.

©2022 Anna Kent and Julia Gregson (P)2022 Bloomsbury Publishing Plc

Critic reviews

"The heart-wrenching tale of one midwife’s quest to help others—and make peace with herself—in some of the world’s most challenging environments." (Leah Hazard, author of Hard Pushed)

"In this stunning, gripping true story, Anna Kent confronts unimaginable hardships to do good in the world.... I was riveted and fascinated by her bravery, her journey and her spirit." (Delia Ephron)

What listeners say about Frontline Midwife

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a wonderful read, so sorry to Finnish it! .

loved this book, and felt so involved in each part of the story. I've always wanted to work abroad but never had the courage to leave the stability of the NHS. so wonderful to read such at times, harrowing and others heartwarming and rewarding accounts of how it really is.
Thank you for your book, your hard work, and narrating it so beautifully.'

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An amazing account ….

A truly humbling story. An incredible woman so deserving of joy and happiness in her life. Beautifully read by the author.

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I couldn't finish this

I heard the author interviewed on Woman's Hour and thought this would be a challenging and informative listen. I quickly found myself disbelieving the author as she narrated her story. For example, after only three months in South Sudan she comes back to the UK on furlough and finds herself upset at the wealth she sees on display at a friend's wedding, saying that she felt alienated from the life she left behind. After only three months I found this transformation unlikely and overly dramatic. She narrates some fairly harrowing tales about the lack of medical care in South Sudan and Bangladesh and the life-long impact these events had on her. I'm married to a nurse and my daughter is a doctor, both in the UK. I know the pressures and heartache they face on a daily basis so the author's inability to deal with her stress was unconvincing. She had trained as a nurse in the NHS before going to Medecin Sans Frontieres and should have developed coping mechanisms. All in all I lost faith in the veracity of her reactions to what was going on around her and the narration continuously annoyed me. I gave up.

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A must read/listen for anyone with even the slightest interest in maternal health

As a midwife I was drawn to this book but as a woman and anxiety sufferer I couldn’t get enough. Heart wrenching, thought provoking and oh so inspiring. You will laugh and cry but ultimately you will feel so grateful to Anna for sharing her story. I could not recommend this book more.

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really compelling

i absolutely loved it, it was a very emotional journey and very well written.

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A great read!

I heard Anna being interviewed on Radio 4 and immediately preordered this book. It was moving and fascinating from beginning to end. I don’t usually write reviews but this is definitely worth a read/ listen. I will be listening to it again.

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Much gratitude

A beautifully written and narrated account. Often difficult to hear but often enlightening and heartwarming. Appreciated by this nurse of 42 years who admires and thanks all involved in these experiences both in the past and those going forward.

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Highly recommend this book

Words cannot describe this beautifully written book .I feel it was an honour to be able to listen to Anna’s story .I hear the pain of her lows and to rejoice in her highs .
Anna is a truly amazing lady who has gone above and beyond in her life ,not only in what she has done but also in sharing her story with us all .
Thank you Anna x
I can’t see any future books matching this xx

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An outstanding read

This heartwrenching true story narrated by the author had me is laughter and tears.

It is well written and the narration has all emotions of the written words. It make you realise how much we have in this country we complain so much about.

It is a heartwarming book which I would highly recommend. The author is Frank and honest, it is a life story well told.

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A life-changing listen.

This was a very well read story of so many lives. She holds the space for so many, telling of the terrifying circumstances so many women find themselves in. I am grateful to have listened to this. Anna's journey describing the world around her and her thoughts and feelings at different points of her life are sensibly told and she has a tenderness and honesty in her approach to life that I found comforting. Brilliant book. Thank you.