Amanda Skenandore, the author of “The Nurse’s Secret” has written an intriguing and captivating novel. The genres for this novel are Historical Fiction, Medical Fiction, Mystery and Suspense, and Fiction. The timeline for this story is set in the 1880’s. The slums provide the setting for the story, as well as Bellevue Hospital. The author describes her dramatic characters as complex and complicated. There is greed, betrayal, theft, threats and murder.
The protagonist of the story, Una Kelly has experience in the slums of New York. To survive, she is able to sneak around and steal from unsuspecting victims. She can easily pick a pocket or two. When a murdered body is found, she is blamed, and the police are about to arrest her. Una is able to escape and finds herself in the footsteps of Florence Nightingale and cons her way Bellevue Hospital as a nursing student.
Amanda Skenandore vividly describes the daily happenstance that the students, nurses, assistants, and doctors deal with. There are some attempts to sterilize and prevent germs and contamination, but the doctors seem to differ on treatments. Una has learned to deal with surgery, patients and blood on the wards. Her greatest fear is being recognized by the police, and being removed from the program.
Una suspects that a deceased patient has been murdered in a similar way as the murdered body found in the streets. She realizes that she is in constant danger, and that discovering the killer just might be the death of her. This is a thought-provoking and intense story that I highly recommend to other readers.