Donna Douglas does a great job at creating likable characters you want to read and follow in ‘The Nightingale Girls.’ It is a fun, light read set in 1930’s London following a group of young women from vastly different backgrounds studying to become nurses at the prestigious Nightingale teaching hospital. Readers follow Amelia (Millie) Bennedict who is the daughter of an Earl in High Society; Helen Tremayne who comes from a terribly strict upbringing and is a legacy to her mother who was a Nightingale nurse; and Dora Doyle who is from the East End and had to work in factories and go to Night School to earn this opportunity. There are others but these are our primary characters. Douglas utilizes them to detail the class structure of the time and the challenges that would be faced by young women during a time of enormous change in England including family expectations, marriage and dating, and entering the workforce.
I read that viewers who enjoyed ‘Call the Midwife’ will enjoy this as well. I agree, and I fall in that category. I had hoped it would delve deeper into class structure and history but I liked it. I will absolutely pick up the next book. It is something I will read when I’m looking for lighter fare. In the past, I’ve likened some books to candy – fun, tasty, satisfying but not particularly filling. This definitely falls in that category. That being said I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like candy. I certainly do.
I received this from Netgalley and Random House UK – North America in return for an honest review.