HEART AND SOUL by Gena Gorrell


The Story of Florence Nightingale
Age Range: 10 & up
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Gorrell (North Star to Freedom, 1997) presents a well-researched history of Florence Nightingale, the events that shaped her, and the political climate of her time. Using photographs, drawings, and Nightingale’s own writings, the period in which she is lived is described and puts into context the extraordinary achievements of a woman who changed the way in which medical care is given. This is not a romanticized picture of “the lady with the lamp.” It is the story of a demanding, sometimes infuriating person who was independent at a time when women of her social and economic class were dependent creatures whose purpose in life was to marry well. Nightingale refused marriage opportunities to pursue a single life. This was made possible by her father’s gift of an income. The narrative begins slowly as Gorrell sketches the historical background of Nightingale’s world. Interest quickens when Nightingale and her family take center stage and the story focuses on their lives and the beginnings of her social conscience. Chapters detailing the state of nursing and medical care of the time, the Crimean War, and the work for which Nightingale is most famous are very compelling. Illustrations selected from historical sources are enhanced by descriptive passages that lend interest to the text. A chapter-by-chapter list of source notes, a bibliography, and picture sources are important documentation. An index is useful for student reports or quick reference information. An excellent biography of a complex heroine. (Nonfiction. 10+)

Pub Date: Nov. 8th, 2000
ISBN: 0-88776-494-0
Page count: 160pp
Publisher: Tundra
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1st, 2000


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