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Posted December 20, 2010
Riveting throughout. Excellent memoir of self-possessed and strong-willed firefighter who joined the predominately male fire department in the aftermath of affirmative action. Acceptance by some, active harassment by others, her experiences are well detailed with a curious sense of detachment that added to the credibility. In the chapter labeled "Firewomen", I was impressed with her assertation that the vilification of Elizabeth Mandel actually helped the other women who came after her. "She is so vilified that the rest of us gain by contrast. Once we are seen to be less defensive or combative than Elizabeth--and rumors about her took on such grotesque proportions that it was impossible to come even close--the firefighter is so relieved that he is friendlier than he might otherwise have been". In a book full of interesting information and observations, the events surrounding Todd Lane could have been easily missed. For me, it was an important reminder that during times of change, people's first reactions, especially during such a difficult time, are not necessarily their ultimate opinions. That change is hard, especially when many felt that "the fire department was the best men's club in the world." and resented the change. That the power of a heartfelt apology can be immense and freeing to both the one who freely offers it and the one who was imprisoned in the anger and frustration. "Suddenly, from the Rescue desk, Todd Lane beckons me over. He hitches his pants and clears his throat. 'Listen,' he says, his voice low. "Is it too late, four years too late, to say I'm sorry?" I definitely think this book is well worth reading and is one that I would have read with my daughters.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 11, 2004
Posted April 20, 2000
I think that this book tells the women side of the story, how tough it is to be able to be treated equaly in the world. I also believe that any women who has the guts to do what Caroline Paul did is very brave, and it just proves that women are just as good as men in any field of work. The book was great I loved it!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.