Friday Books £12.99
More Blood, More Sweat and Another Cup of Tea, By Tom Reynolds
Sunday 26 July 2009
The second collection of Tom Reynolds' bloggings about being an ambulance driver in Newham, east London, this is a catalogue of tragedies, triumphs, comical mishaps, and the best and the worst of human behaviour.
Reynolds removes a dead dog from a pensioner's flat on a stretcher, attends more stabbing incidents than you can shake a stick at, saves lives, is sent to pick up an 11-year-old boy who's faked an asthma attack to get a day off school, is abused by patients, and rails at pregnant women who use ambulances as "matern-a-taxis". He has decided preferences – social workers, drunks and druggies are out, police officers and sensible patients are in. He likes animals more than people and children not at all.
While you may not agree with all his judgements, a strong sense of character comes through – and there's no arguing with his commitment to his job, nor that it is essential. The style is chatty rather than literary and the punctuation not all it could be, but this is a memoir with a distinctive voice about the sides of life most of us are fortunate enough to know very little about. It would make a wonderful radio series.
Maisie Williams single-handedly rises to the challengeTV
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
- 2 Kim Kardashian on Bruce Jenner's 'story': 'We support him no matter what, and I think when the time is right, he'll talk'
- 3 Russian girl takes her own life after parents find pornography on her computer
- 4 Ball pool for adults opens in London
- 5 Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures