A passionate and often painful look at nursing by a woman who eloquently explains the good, the bad and the maddening about her profession. Heron, who still practices, seems to have added the wisdom of hindsight and the healing powers of time to her diaries. She recounts in amazing detail her backbreaking studies for her degree and the patients and colleagues she's worked with in her 10 years of nursing. There is frustration at the hands of unsympathetic or incompetent doctors, despair for those in her care who are terminally ill, cheer for the ones that get up out of the hospital bed and go home. She weaves the emotional lives of her patients delicately into their physical lives and paints life-sized portraits of them. Heron avoids making herself out too saintly in her own story--when she falls apart after a friend and colleague dies, after the stress of the job wears her down, she acknowledges that the care giver needs some care herself. And, or course, there are the indignities of a nurse's low wages, rotten hours and shabby treatment by many doctors. Heron makes the readers see why anyone would be drawn to the profession--and why anyone, even the most caring, would want to leave it. A fast-paced, involving read.