HOME SCHOOL BOOK REVIEW
Book: Sue Barton, Student Nurse
Author: Helen Dore Boylston
Publisher: Image Cascade, republished in 2008
Language level: 2
(1=nothing objectionable; 2=common euphemisms and/or childish slang terms; 3=some cursing and/or profanity; 4=a lot of cursing and/or profanity; 5=obscenity and/or vulgarity)
Recommended reading level: Ages 12-16
Rating: ***** 5 stars (EXCELLENT)
Reviewed by Wayne S. Walker
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Boylston, Helen Dore. Sue Barton, Student Nurse (originally published in 1936 by Little Brown and Company, Boston, MA). Volume 1 of the “Sue Barton” series tells the the story of Sue Barton’s first year of training as a probationer and then as a student nurse at a large, metropolitan hospital. Sue, with her red hair and eager spirit, is capable of mistakes but also of warm attachments and a courageous devotion to her chosen profession. During the year she makes friends with Kit and Connie, meets the young intern Dr. William Barry who will eventually become her husband, and generally learns the discipline and rigorous training which are required of every good hospital nurse. She even undergoes her own appendectomy. Will her doubts and her very human mistakes ruin her career? Will she just give up and quit as some others did? Or will she make it?
Sue Barton is the central character in a series of seven novels for adolescent girls written by Helen Dore Boylston between 1936 and 1952. The series was published by Little Brown and Co. and saw a number of reprints following its initial publication. At present the series is in reprint by Image Cascade Publishing with new softcover editions. The “Sue Barton” books were one of my wife Karen’s favorite series to read when she was growing up,and she still has all of them. There are a few common euphemisms but no major objectionable material. The author provides good character and plot development. The six sequels are Senior Nurse (1937), Visiting Nurse (1938), Rural Nurse (1939), Superintendent of Nurses (1940), Neighborhood Nurse (1949), and Staff Nurse (1952).