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Blood, Sweat, Tea and alot more
Blood, Sweat and Tea - Tom Reynolds
Member Name: marcellep
Blood, Sweat and Tea - Tom Reynolds
Advantages: Real Life, Cost, Author,
Disadvantages: Can be upsetting
Blood Sweat & Tea
Working with the Scottish Ambulance Service, I have always had a keen interest in blogs about the ambulance service whether than be London Ambulance service or Scottish Ambulance Service. I stumbled across a Blog written by Tom Reynolds an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) who works with the London Ambulance Service (LAS). Tom wrote fantastic blogs and always had you checking back for more updates until one day I went on to the site and seen a post " Read my stories in a book" . I think back then you could pre-order the book. But I waited until the price came down and then ordered it.
Cost and availability
I know that many of you will either go over to his blog and check his work out or even order the book, so here is a quick rundown of prices.
All prices are for online and brand new
Amazon - £3.99
Play.Com - £5.99
Waterstones - £5.99
A little about the author/blogger
We are all under the impression his name is Tom Reynolds, when in fact that is not the case at all. His real name is Brian Kellett 36 years old who is a qualified technician with the LAS. Tom began working with the NHS back in 1998 where he worked as a staff nurse at the Chase Hospital in London, which would lead him to work for the LAS. He joined the LAS 2002 were until today he remains as a Technician.
The format of the book
This book is ideal for anyone that enjoys reading short stories/paragraph. Often the stories last only one page, however it is very easy for you to put the book down and pick up from where you left off. The format is very easy to follow and the stories are all broken up so you know you are starting a new story. It is basically paper version of his blog without all the dates and times etc.
The author gives you a real insight to the on goings of an EMT within the LAS, and to be honest I strongly believe that his account is a true reflection of most if not all ambulance services around the United Kingdom. Written in such a way that you feel as though you are part of the actual story it is the author has you gripped from the word go. This particular book covers Tom's career from 2003 to 2006 inclusive.
Tom paints a picture in your mind that when you see an ambulance racing through the streets under emergency conditions that its life threatening. Well that is far from it as detailed in this truly superb book. Dealing with drunks is a regular occurrence for any EMT, but we can all forget about the smells and abuse what they have to deal with. Well Tom reminds you of all the details and often in graphic accounts.
The book details how the LAS deal with relief staff, when any new member of staff come "On the road" they are placed in relief which means they worked with different partners most shifts and can be placed at any station within the division. Tom continues to tell the reader how when he is singled crewed all he does is sits on station, this seems bizarre to me that an EMT who has no partner is not allowed to respond to emergency calls on their own!
Throughout the book Tom does cover some of the most interesting facts of the LAS, often out spoken and controversial with what he writes, but all credit to the author he always back's his argument up with some sort of evidence.
There are many highs and lows within this book, but we do have to remember that this book is based on real life events, often life changing too. Tom describes dealing with children in cardiac arrest (Death) which is very harrowing to read, but within a few pages its back to dealing with drunks and regular callers. Your emotions will be all over the place with this book that's for sure.
During reading the book there are pages you really will laugh at, Example. When Tom and his partner arrive at an emergency and have to park the ambulance on the street causing an obstruction, cars blast there horn and one person even goes up to the rear of the ambulance asking them to move. Now let's think about it, there could be someone fighting for their life, being given emergency life saving treatment and some toffee nosed person bursts the doors open. Luckily that was not the case and Tom taken longer before he moved away just to annoy the person even more.
There is also a section within the book that covers "ORCON" which is the government standards for response times, every life threatening emergency should have a ambulance, First Responder or qualified personnel on scene within 8mins, but if the crew get on scene 9 mins after the call came in and successfully resuscitate a cardiac arrest patient who survives that's a failure!!!
Tom shows how he is dedicated to his job as an EMT and he is now a full time member of the LAS on a rota, so he works with the same partner every shift unless there of sick.
What do I think
This book is truly remarkable account of what really happens with the ambulance service; Tom writes very well and has a fantastic way of describing certain incidents. The book is written in such a way that you will feel angry, sad and happy all within a few minutes. I really believe that this book should be given to all new recruits to any ambulance service as it reality.
I am someone who does not read a lot but I can assure you that I have enjoyed the 288 pages of this book several times. It taken me only two days to read the entire book.
Point- This book is graphic and certainly not for all to read, I would not advise any children to read this book.
For more information on the author please check out his blog, Tom is currently of work sick and still updates his blog on a weekly basis.
This book was published by - Friday Books - Release date 2006
Next book is released 28th May - Pre ordering available @ Amazon.
Thanks for reading my first ever book review
Also posted on other review sites.
Summary: See Review
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