Monday, February 8, 2016
Fever by Mary Beth Keane
The Department of Health sent Mallon to North Brother Island, where she was kept in isolation from 1907 to 1910, then released under the condition that she never work as a cook again. Yet for Mary—proud of her former status and passionate about cooking—the alternatives were abhorrent. She defied the edict.
That was what I wanted to read about! I do understand why her relationship with Alfred was included, I just didn't think that bit was all that interesting. Yes it gave her the motivation to do some of the things she did, but yeah..not what got me reading faster. Whenever the scene switched to Alfred and Mary I found myself tempted to skip pages and felt my eyes gloss over a little. Never a good sign! However, when she was looking back on all the families she cooked for, when she was isolated on the island, and during her trials I was mesmorized!
I did give this book a 4 stars, because there were many many times when I couldn't put it down, but it would have had 5 stars if the Alfred bits were shorter.
Overall, Fever is an interesting look at a very famous medical case that opened the eyes of the medical world. Mary Mallon is a curious case and this book did, for the most part, her story justice!