Welcome to the Historical Fiction Online forums: a friendly place to discuss, review and discover historical fiction.
If this is your first visit, please be sure to check out the FAQ by clicking the link above.
You will have to register before you can post: click the register link above to proceed.
To start viewing posts, select the forum that you want to visit from the selection below.

September 2010 BOTM: My Name is Mary Sutter by Robin Oliveira

A monthly discussion on varying themes guided by our members. (Book of the Month discussions through December 2011 can be found in this section too.)
TLee
Reader
Location: Westchester, NY

Postby TLee » Sat September 18th, 2010, 10:11 pm

This was a wonderful book. The author made you really feel like you were in those horrrible conditions in the hospitals. It opened my eyes as to what those poor injured soldiers had to go through. No wonder so many of them died.

User avatar
rockygirl
Avid Reader
Location: Upstate New York

Postby rockygirl » Sun September 19th, 2010, 12:41 am

I'm teaching the Civil War right now and have been using some of the less horrible medical information in class.

User avatar
Divia
Bibliomaniac
Location: Always Cloudy, Central New York

Postby Divia » Sun September 19th, 2010, 2:03 pm

"rockygirl" wrote:I'm teaching the Civil War right now and have been using some of the less horrible medical information in class.


That's cool. What are your student's reactions?
News, views, and reviews on books and graphic novels for young adult.
http://yabookmarks.blogspot.com/

User avatar
rockygirl
Avid Reader
Location: Upstate New York

Postby rockygirl » Sun September 19th, 2010, 9:45 pm

"Divia" wrote:That's cool. What are your student's reactions?


My students are very literal. They wanted to know why good doctors did not help the soldiers, and I had a hard time making them understand that all doctors didn't understand infections, etc.

User avatar
Divia
Bibliomaniac
Location: Always Cloudy, Central New York

Postby Divia » Sat October 2nd, 2010, 5:18 pm

I'm really disappointed that this book didn't get more discussion. :(
News, views, and reviews on books and graphic novels for young adult.

http://yabookmarks.blogspot.com/

User avatar
Michy
Bibliophile
Location: California

Postby Michy » Sun October 3rd, 2010, 5:45 am

I'm a little behind the game, but... :o I just picked this book up from the library yesterday. I started it this evening, and read three chapters. I'm liking it so far. The author's style is unique -- I can't quite put my finger on it, her use of parenthetical remarks is different, for one thing -- but I like it.

User avatar
Brenna
Bibliophile
Location: Delaware

Postby Brenna » Mon October 4th, 2010, 2:26 pm

I am behind the mark as well, but I was number 29 the library list, so I'm lucky I got it before Christmas. I am completely engrossed in this book (as I sit here at work and wish I had brought it to read at lunchtime). For those in the States, it is similar to Dr. Quinn ( I made the same reference to S. Donati's Into the Wilderness Series). Although Mary has the support of most of her family, she is a woman fighting to be a woman doctor in a man's world. I'm not that far into it (Mary just met Dr. Stipp) but I'm loving the characters already. I'm also afraid by all of the crying remarks made on here-I don't want it to be like John Jake's North and the South where I cried the whole last book. Oy....
Brenna

User avatar
Divia
Bibliomaniac
Location: Always Cloudy, Central New York

Postby Divia » Tue October 5th, 2010, 1:00 am

I'm glad you guys have been able to pick it up.

The author does have a unique style that drew me into the book. I loved the characters and felt they were very real.

Mary's struggle is very real. And the way the author captured doctoring in the Victorian Era is amazing and frightening.
News, views, and reviews on books and graphic novels for young adult.

http://yabookmarks.blogspot.com/

User avatar
Michy
Bibliophile
Location: California

Postby Michy » Tue October 5th, 2010, 2:11 am

I'm almost half-way through and still enjoying it. Although there are aspects of Mary and Bonnie that speak to me, there's something about the writer's style that keeps me somewhat disconnected. That's not to say that I'm not enjoying the book, only that I feel like a stand-off observer, and I can't imagine at this point that the book will tap into my emotions enough to be wrenching or make me cry. Although I guess a lot could change between now and the end. :)

It is interesting to read the descriptions of Washington DC back then, since I just visited the city in April. For instance, there is a brief mention that Mary Lincoln was staying at the Soldier's Home -- that was part of our trip. It has only been opened up for tours for a couple of years, and it is now called "Lincoln's Cottage."

Also, I had learned a little about Dorothea Dix from my friend who took the trip with me. She is an R.N. who knows quite a bit about the history of nursing, and it was seeing Miss Dix's portrait at the National Portrait Gallery that triggered the conversation. Apparently she was a real dragon. But she did a lot to further nursing and help it become a serious occupation for women.

Reading about the soldier's conditions -- the camp life, the lack of necessities, the appalling lack of sanitation and medical care -- reminds me of what I have read about the Revolutionary War. In both cases it is pretty amazing that anyone survived.

User avatar
Brenna
Bibliophile
Location: Delaware

Postby Brenna » Tue October 5th, 2010, 2:21 pm

Michy-

That is too funny, because my husband and I were there over Christmas and visited the "Cottage." I was thinking of the exact same things as I was reading the book. That and how anyone survived those god awful conditions.
Brenna


Return to “Feature of the Month”