Monday 13 August 2018

Working Stiff by Judy Melinek and T J Mitchell

Working Stiff: Two Years, 262 Bodies, and the Making of a Medical ExaminerWorking Stiff: Two Years, 262 Bodies, and the Making of a Medical Examiner by Judy Melinek
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - 1 day

Pages - 258

Publisher - Scribner

Source - Amazon

Blurb from Goodreads

The fearless memoir of a young forensic pathologist's rookie season as a NYC medical examiner, and the cases, hair-raising and heartbreaking and impossibly complex, that shaped her as both a physician and a mother.

Just two months before the September 11 terrorist attacks, Dr. Judy Melinek began her training as a New York City forensic pathologist. With her husband T.J. and their toddler Daniel holding down the home front, Judy threw herself into the fascinating world of death investigation, performing autopsies, investigating death scenes, counseling grieving relatives. Working Stiff chronicles Judy's two years of training, taking readers behind the police tape of some of the most harrowing deaths in the Big Apple, including a firsthand account of the events of September 11, the subsequent anthrax bio-terrorism attack, and the disastrous crash of American Airlines flight 587.

Lively, action-packed, and loaded with mordant wit, Working Stiff offers a firsthand account of daily life in one of America's most arduous professions, and the unexpected challenges of shuttling between the domains of the living and the dead. The body never lies, and through the murders, accidents, and suicides that land on her table, Dr. Melinek lays bare the truth behind the glamorized depictions of autopsy work on shows like CSI and Law and Order to reveal the secret story of the real morgue.

My Review

Books like this I do enjoy reading, if enjoy is the correct word, you learn things about the human body usually picking up terms, diseases and conditions which I then go off and read up on. This isn't heavily packed with that kind of stuff but there are dotterings throughout. You learn about their job but for the most part you get the chunk of what rolls through the mortuary doors.

Some of the book may be quite emotive for some as she examines many different types of deaths, September 11th is also covered and whilst I am UK I remember how I felt/feel reading that so just a headsup. It is gorey and gruesome in parts, heartbreaking, sad and if you have lost someone to suicide you will either agree with her thoughts of be absolutely livid, again just a heads up.

It is an interesting book I could have read this in one sitting had things not got in the way. Easily enough to follow, gripping and grueling accounts of truth deaths so it is sad in parts but really interesting. Some parts may shock you as you know this is real life and not conjured up in the authors brain. This was my first read by this author, I will certainly be checking to see if she has written anything else, books or other publications. 4/5 for me this time, I wouldn't read it just before or after a meal though!

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