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  • This Is Going to Hurt

  • Secret Diaries of a Junior Doctor
  • By: Adam Kay
  • Narrated by: Adam Kay
  • Length: 6 hrs and 17 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 423
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 392
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 391

Welcome to the life of a junior doctor: 97-hour weeks, life and death decisions, a constant tsunami of bodily fluids, and the hospital parking meter earns more than you. Scribbled in secret after endless days, sleepless nights and missed weekends, Adam Kay's This is Going to Hurt provides a no-holds-barred account of his time on the NHS front line. Hilarious, horrifying and heartbreaking, this diary is everything you wanted to know - and more than a few things you didn't - about life on and off the hospital ward.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Not for the prudish but well written/read

  • By Carron on 11-08-2018

Not for the prudish but well written/read

5 out of 5 stars
5 out of 5 stars
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-08-2018

DISCLAIMER: If you are at all squeemish about language or such. Don't read this book. The author is a former Obstetrics and Gynaecology doctor so his anecdotes generally relate to the private regions of both genders, birthing, fertility and related activities. His language is... shall we say "colourful" at times.

Having said that, he brings a window into the world of a "junior" doctor and the impact that has on their lives, relationships and mental health, in a fresh and amusing way. I put "junior" doctor in quotation marks because he rises up the ranks with around 6 years clinical experience but "junior" apparently refers to anyone below consultant.

I enjoyed the fact that he used Harry Potter pseudonyms for anonymity and linked them somewhat to the characters. Particularly unpleasant patients or superiors shared names with death eaters, annoying ministry officials took the names of annoying ministry of magic employees, an early tutor was "Professor Flitwick" and Adam's best friend was Ron Weasley.

Most of the book takes a light hearted look, and somewhat sarcastic jab, at the NHS. In fact the book was born out of a comedy act which sought to redress what Adam felt was an unfair portrayal of junior doctors by politicians. However, it ends with quite a serious explanation of his departure and a very clear expression of his feelings about the NHS vs Junior Doctors disputes of 2015/2016. As a teacher in NZ facing similar industrial disputes I found I identified with much of what he was saying in this section. Obviously not the level of consequence/responsibility doctors carry, but many of the other aspects like a workload in compatible with a personal life (although for NHS doctors it's far worse), serious understaffing, underfunding causing issues with patient (or, for us, student) care, the government's blame game, and the stress caused by unfair expectations, to name just a few.

Overall, I felt this was an accurate representation which had the ring of truth. Adam clearly has a gift for comedy and writing as well as the intelligence for medicine.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • The Edge of the Fall

  • By: Kate Williams
  • Narrated by: Katie Scarfe
  • Length: 16 hrs and 32 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars 1
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 1
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars 1

In the aftermath of the Great War, the de Witt family are struggling to piece together the shattered fragments of their lives. Rudolf and his wife, Verena, are still reeling from the loss of their second son and don't know how to function in the postwar world. Stoneythorpe Hall has become an empty shell, with no servants to ensure its upkeep. Celia, the de Witts' youngest daughter, is still desperate to spread her wings and see more of the world.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Fell Short

  • By Carron on 18-11-2017

Fell Short

3 out of 5 stars
4 out of 5 stars
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 18-11-2017

It was well read but the storyline was predictable and the character development never really made up for it.

The story was told from the perspective of three characters but it was hard to see how some parts/perspectives added to the story. Many of the sub plots were underdeveloped, unrelated to what appeared to be the key theme, and/or lacked satisfying conclusions, though more time was often spent on these sub plots, than the titled plot.

The court aspects also annoyed me. Even back in the war years I don't believe the lawyer would have gotten away with the hearsay, speculation, and storytelling as described which made the whole thing seem like a farce.

Overall, It was fine for a long car journey but not a satisfying or gripping tale.