Reading progress update: I've read 25%.

The Way of all Flesh  - Ambrose Parry

What an odd, odd book.


The book is set in Edinburgh, but more particularly it is set at James Young Simpson's medical practice and we follow a main character who is training as a doctor and is a junior assistant to Simpson. 


Simpson was a notable obstetrician (most famous for first promoting chloroform to ease labour pains - Queen Vic was a fan), so most of the cases we get to witness and most of the discussions we get to follow between the doctors (some very, very notable characters) all focus on childbirth, complications, abortions, quackery, and newfangled science such as phrenology etc. 


If I were flippant, I'd say this is a bit like Call the Victorian Midwife...


But among all of this there is also a murder mystery and the mystery of a disappearance which are not quite Ripperesque but are not far from it. 

Oh, and there is a hint of a blossoming romance.


If I weren't such a sucker for medical history (which seems to be quite good - I love the description of grumpy Duncan, another shining star of Victorian obstetrics), I'd be quite bored.