Scanty Particulars One can't help but expect great things from a subtitle that heralds "The Scandalous Life and Astonishing Secret of Queen Victoria's Most Eminent Military Doctor."… Scanty Particulars One can't help but expect great things from a subtitle that heralds "The Scandalous Life and Astonishing Secret of Queen Victoria's Most Eminent Military Doctor."… 2003-01-07 Nonfiction
Book Review

SCANTY PARTICULARS (2003)

EW's GRADE
B

Details Release Date: Jan 07, 2003; Writer: Rachel Holmes; Genre: Nonfiction

One can't help but expect great things from a subtitle that heralds ''The Scandalous Life and Astonishing Secret of Queen Victoria's Most Eminent Military Doctor.'' And for the most part, the story stays true to its word: A flamboyant dandy and early vegetarian, James Barry rallied for health reform, performed the English colonies' first successful cesarean section, and was nearly ruined by a salacious accusation of ''buggering'' a high-ranking patron. That Barry was a hermaphrodite was the biggest scandal of all, but its hasty revelation at the end of this meticulously researched, highly sympathetic tale is more likely to elicit a well-worn sigh than the intended gasp.

Originally posted Jan 10, 2003 Published in issue #690 Jan 10, 2003 Order article reprints