The Blue Cotton Gown
A Midwife's Memoir
By Patricia Harman
Beacon Press (MA), Paperback, 9780807072912, 290pp.
Publication Date: October 2009
List Price: $16.00*
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Despite nurse-midwife Patsy Harman's own financial and personal medical trials, including her private battle with uterine cancer, she devotes herself to her patients' well-being in all aspects of their lives. They, in turn, tell her intimate stories both heartbreaking and uplifting.
"In her sweetly perceptive memoir, Harman reveals how her exam room becomes a confessional. Coaxing women in thin gowns to share secrets ... she reminds them that they’re not alone."—Michelle Green, People
"Harman has a gift for storytelling, and The Blue Cotton Gown is a moving, percipient book."—Karen R. Long, Cleveland Plain Dealer
"Harman shows us the joys and sorrows of listening to women’s stories and attending to their bodies, and she leads us through the complicated life of a healer who is profoundly shaped by her patients and their journeys."—Perri Klass, author of The Mercy Rule and Treatment Kind and Fair
"Luminescent, ruthlessly authentic, humane, and brilliantly written."—Samuel Shem, MD, author of The House of God, Mount Misery, and The Spirit of the Place
"Touchingly revelatory . . . deeply moving."—Booklist, starred review
"As the mother of seven children and veteran of eight pregnancy losses, I knew when I ran my bath that I would be unable to resist Patricia Harman’s memoir of midwifery, The Blue Cotton Gown. What I didn’t realize was that it would cause me, a sensible person, to get into her bath with one sock still on and rise from it when the candle was gone and the water cold. Utterly true and lyrical as any novel, Harman’s book should be a little classic."—Jacquelyn Mitchard, author of The Deep End of the Ocean and Cage of Stars