- Lists and Suggestions
- Find e-books and more
- New York Times Best Sellers
- Teens’ Book Suggestions
- Kids’ Book Suggestions
- Recent Fiction Additions
- Recent Mystery Additions
- Recent Science Fiction Additions
- Recent Large Type Fiction Additions
- Recent Large Type Nonfiction Additions
- Agatha Awards The Agatha Awards honor the traditional mystery – books best typified by the works of Agatha Christie. Awards are presented yearly for Best Novel, Best First Mystery, Best Short Story, Best Non-Fiction, and Best Children’s/Young Adult Mystery.
- Bram Stoker Award The Horror Writers Association annually presents this award for outstanding horror writing in a number of different categories.
- Edgar Awards Awarded by the Mystery Writer’s Association, this yearly award is presented to authors of distinguished work in various categories of the mystery genre.
- Hugo Award Also known as the Science Fiction Achievement Award, the Hugo Award in presented annually by the World Science Fiction Society to a variety of different categories.
- Man Booker Prize One of the world’s most prestigious awards, the Man Booker Prize for Fiction represents the very best in contemporary fiction and is awarded to the best novel of the year written by a citizen of the Commonwealth or the Republic of Ireland.
- National Book Award The National Book Awards honors exceptional books written by U.S. citizens in four genres: Fiction, Nonfiction, Poetry, and Young People’s Literature.
- National Book Critics Circle Award The National Book Critics Circle is comprised of over 700 active book reviewers and presents awards for the finest books published in English for fiction, general nonfiction, biography/autobiography, poetry and criticism.
- Nebula Award Presented by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America since 1965, the Nebula Awards have been given each year for the best novel, novella, novelette, and short story.
- Nobel Prize for Literature The Nobel Prize is an international award administered by the Nobel Foundation in Stockholm, Sweden and is awarded for achievements in physics, chemistry, physiology or medicine, literature and for peace.
- Pulitzer Prize for Fiction Lists Pulitzer Prize winning titles and profiles winners from 1917 to the present.
- RITA Awards Presented yearly by the Romance Writers of America, one Rita award is given out in each of 13 different romance categories.
Books Featured in the Media »
- Book TV – CSPAN2 Enhances CSPAN2’s Book TV weekend programs that feature nonfiction books by providing an opportunity to watch or listen to programs that have recently aired and find additional information not available on the network, as well as view bestseller lists from around the country, upcoming programming information, author information and more.
- Good Morning America Selections from Good Morning America’s Read This! book club.
- Masterpiece Theater Bookclub The Masterpiece Theatre has adapted many books to screen. Their book club gives viewers the opportunity to read and discuss selected books alongside their screen adaptations.
- Oprah’s Books Oprah’s book club choices, books seen on her show, books from her magazine and more.
- Today Show Excerpts and information on NBC’s Today Show’s book recommendations.
Genre Fiction »
- Horror Writers Association Horror headlines, conventions, free excerpts, writing tips, reading lists, author interviews, new horror releases and much more.
- International Thriller Writers, Inc. Thriller authors created ITW to celebrate the thriller genre, to enhance the prestige and raise the profile of thrillers, to award prizes to outstanding thriller novels and authors, and to create opportunities for collegiality within the thriller community.
- Mystery Writers of America Mystery Writers of America is the premier organization for mystery writers, professionals allied to the crime writing field, aspiring crime writers, and those who are devoted to the genre.
- Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America Official site of the nonprofit organization offering an extensive list of sci-fi and fantasy links.
- Romance Writers of America A nonprofit association providing networking and support to romance fiction writers.
- Western Writers of America The official website of the Western Writers of America where you can obtain information about Old West topics, contact western authors, get “Spur Award” updates, etc.
Reviews and Features »
- BookPage New book reviews, author interviews, feature articles and other book information.
- BookBrowse Excerpts and reviews about books, plus author interviews, reading guides and more.
- Book Reporter An all-encompassing site featuring reviews, features articles, books to movies, author interviews and reader commentaries.
- BookWire An internet resource dedicated to new titles, new authors, and the general scoop on the book industry. Use this site to search book reviews, read about the latest releases, watch author video clips, and learn about upcoming book events.
- Overbooked Provides timely information about literary & genre fiction as well as readable nonfiction. Includes annotated lists of nonfiction, fiction and mystery books which received starred reviews, themed booklists, featured titles lists and hot lists of hard cover US fiction releases.
- MysteryNet.com Online mysteries, mystery games, mystery books and resourses and more.
- Stop, You’re Killing Me! A comprehensive index of mystery books by author and series character.
- RT Book Reviews This trade journal includes reviews of upcoming romances, “Top Picks” of the month, and tips and resources for romance writers and readers.
- Locus Online A journal featuring news and reviews of science fiction and fantasy.
- The SF Site A comprehensive site featuring book reviews, excerpts, author interviews, articles, author booklists, and more.
- Buried.com Reviews of horror books and movies, horror interviews, links to haunted houses, etc.
- Roundup Magazine An online magazine published by the Western Writers of America featuring award winners, reviews of western novels, and more.
Title: Call the Midwife (also called The Midwife)
Author: Jennifer Worth
Page Count: 340 pages
Genre: Nonfiction, Memoir
Tone: Reflective, Warm
Reflects on the experiences of Jennifer Worth as a midwife in London’s postwar East End, including the nuns from whom she learned her craft and the interesting and challenging births she aided during her career.
These book discussion questions are highly detailed and will ruin plot points if you have not read the book.
The Library is happy to share these original questions for your use. If reproducing, please credit with the following statement: 2016 Mount Prospect Public Library. All rights reserved. Used with Permission.
1. Do you believe this book is adequately described as a career/work memoir or is it more than that?
2. What else did you learn about beyond midwifery in post-WW II England? (What did you learn that you weren’t expecting to?) Was the book what you expected?
3. Beyond childbirth and midwifery, what are the dominant themes in the book?
4. One of the challenges of writing a memoir is deciding what to include and what to leave out. Do you imagine Jennifer Worth had any difficulty making these decisions when writing her memoir? (Note: She continued and wrote two additional books; The Midwife is considered first in a trilogy.)
5. According to an article on Slate (11-1-2012), the character of Chummy was created by Worth (Worth’s daughters insist she was real) – she was not based on an actual person she knew in that time. How do you feel about the existence of fictional elements in a non-fiction book? Does it affect your enjoyment of the book?
6. Worth’s ability to connect with people is somewhat restrained – she mentions several times holding back and resisting getting too drawn into someone’s personal situation. What do you think of her preference to keep a distance? Do you think this was a professional stance, or more of a reflection of her personality?
7. How do you think this distance/reserve affected her ability to write a book such as this? Is it a strength or a weakness?
8. Can you recall which anecdotes or deliveries affected her despite her efforts to not be emotional?
9. Which mother/baby moments or deliveries did you find most memorable? Did they all contribute equally to the book? Were there any stories that should have been left out?
10. What about the men in the book? Who stands out in your mind? Are there any generalizations that could be made about how men are portrayed?
11. Which nuns at Nonnatus House did you find most interesting?
12. What was her purpose in writing her memoirs? Who do you think Worth’s intended audience was?
13. If you are a parent or not, would this affect your enjoyment or appreciation of the book? What about if you like history or not?
14. Have you seen the BBC series based on this book (and other two books)? How does it compare to the book?
15. Would you say there are differences between the book and the TV show? If so, how are they different? Does one enrich the other?
16. What do you think about the level of detail in some of the deliveries? Was it necessary? Does it give you a richer understanding of this line of work?
17. Thinking about the subject matter and the time period / setting, would you say this was an easy or difficult book to read?
18. The book’s subtitle is “a memoir of birth, joy, and hard times.” Was there a balance between challenging stories and more joyous circumstances? Would you say the book had an overall tone / mood to it, or is it hard to say?
19. How has life changed for women since the time period captured in this book? Have prenatal care and obstetrics changed?
20. What things do you think have stayed the same? Despite the specific setting and time period, is there a timeless appeal to this book?
21. Are you interested in reading her two additional books? Is one enough? If you haven’t watched the series yet, do you think you will?
22. How would you describe her writing style? Do you feel aware of the fact that she wasn’t a professional writer?
23. Is there anything that we can learn from her work as a midwife? If so, what is it and why is it important?
Want help with your book discussion group? Check out tips, advice, and all the ways the Library can help support your group!
Reading group guide from the publisher
Discussion questions and responses from blog, Project Motherhood
PBS music playlist for Call the Midwife
Video interview with Jennifer Worth on her life
Radio Times article: Jennifer Worth’s daughter on their mother