Mirror Book Club: A Paramedic’s Encounters With Life And Death among top reads


Our run down of this week’s top reads with the Mirror Book Club include a beautifully written account of 10 years as a paramedic.

Queen of crime Val McDermid continues to reign supreme and we look at a comic novel featuring a depiction of Charlotte Bronte.

Have a read of what our reviewers thought.

And don’t forget to join the Mirror Book Club – details below.

Can You Hear Me? A Paramedic’s Encounters With Life And Death, by Jake Jones

Quercus, £16.99

In this account of 10 years as an ambulance service paramedic, Jones shares stories of the challenges he has faced: the man who stopped breathing in a supermarket toilet; the silent newborn baby; the abusive woman who physically attacks him; the woman in cardiac arrest at home.

It’s gruelling, messy, traumatic and sometimes dangerous and movingly, the tables are turned when Jones’s own father – a dementia sufferer – goes missing in central London.

Can You Hear Me? A Paramedic’s Encounters With Life And Death by Jake Jones and How The Dead Speak by Val McDermid

This beautifully written book, punctuated with wry humour, is an often sobering portrayal of the ailing, the distressed and the lonely in our society. It’s also an uplifting read. You’ll thank your lucky stars that should your hour of need arrive, so will someone like Jake Jones.

BY CAROLINE SANDERSON

How The Dead Speak, by Val McDermid 

Sphere, £8.99 

Dr Tony Hill is behind bars and shamed detective Carol Jordan has been put out to pasture, but their former colleagues are investigating the skeletons of schoolgirls at a former convent. 

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Nearby, in a vegetable plot, eight young men are decomposing. Plastic bags taped over the corpses’ heads suggest foul play but are the bodies the work of a maniacal serial killer? 

The Queen of Crime still reigns supreme.

BY STUART WINTER

Late In The Day, by Tessa Hadley

Vintage, £8.99

This compelling novel dissects the lives and loves of four largely unlikeable characters. Sexy Lydia and shy Christine were best friends at college where Lydia fell for self-obsessed Alex. Wealthy Zach, Alex’s best friend, took a shine to Christine. However many years later, Zachary is married to Lydia, and Alex to Christine. But when Zachary dies, their lives are upended and the hidden secrets of their tight-knit relationships begin to unravel.

BY EITHNE FARRY 

Glass Town, by Isabel Greenberg and Late In The Day, by Tessa Hadley

Glass Town, by Isabel Greenberg

Jonathan Cape, £18.99

In this beautifully drawn graphic novel, Charlotte Bronte is mourning the death of her beloved siblings when a character she created as a child, Charles Wellesley, appears. He leads her back into the richly imaginative world that the young Brontes created, offering much-needed escape.

From the vivid artwork to a story as poignant and touching as it is witty, this is an artful, inventive and deeply moving mash-up of fact
and fiction.

BY CHARLOTTE HEATHCOTE

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Join the Mirror Book Club!

Each month we choose a paperback we think you’ll enjoy, either fiction or non-fiction. When you’ve read it, we’d love you to join our Facebook group and tell us what you thought, good or bad.

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Current Mirror Book Club read:

A Keeper, by Graham Norton





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