Listen free for 30 days

Listen with a free trial

One credit a month, good for any title to download and keep.
Unlimited listening to the Plus Catalogue - thousands of select Audible Originals, podcasts and audiobooks.
Exclusive member-only deals.
No commitment - cancel anytime.
Buy Now for £11.29

Buy Now for £11.29

Pay using card ending in
By completing your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and authorise Audible to charge your designated card or any other card on file. Please see our Privacy Notice, Cookies Notice and Interest-based Ads Notice.

Summary

Andy Thompson's true-to-life, graphic, and gripping account of his work as an NHS paramedic in Britain's Accident and Emergency Ambulance Service will shock you, sadden you, entertain you, and perhaps inspire you. You'll smile at some of Andy's real patient encounters, while others will cause you to wipe a tear.

Using official NHS documentation recorded at the time to give precise details of each incident, Andy has held firm to the real-life accounts, even in keeping the dialogue as close as his memory allows to what was really said at the time. It's as if you're there next to him, struggling with the effects of adrenaline and fighting to save life. This is a rare work of medical nonfiction delivered in a way that is factual, informative, but at the same time naturally entertaining and moving, written with candour and humour. And if you have ever thought what it takes to become a paramedic - or any other of the specialist vocations - and that you could never achieve it yourself, Andy's inspiring story of how he went from postman to frontline healthcare professional, fulfilling his dream, will make you think again that anything is possible if you have the desire.

Andy says there are no heroics in the book and that he simply did his job, but we are sure The Dark Side will leave you convinced there are true heroes on our streets right here, right now. Saving lives every day, every night and often against all the odds. It might even change your whole perspective on life.

©2014 Andy Thompson (P)2015 Andy Thompson

What listeners say about The Dark Side

Average customer ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    110
  • 4 Stars
    25
  • 3 Stars
    4
  • 2 Stars
    3
  • 1 Stars
    3
Performance
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    100
  • 4 Stars
    15
  • 3 Stars
    8
  • 2 Stars
    3
  • 1 Stars
    2
Story
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    102
  • 4 Stars
    16
  • 3 Stars
    5
  • 2 Stars
    1
  • 1 Stars
    3

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

There are better books

Overall 3/5

This book would have been infinitely improved by less repetition. Once you've heard all the basics once, listening to them every time starts to grate on your nerves. They also read as though they were being read as evidence in a court of law. Not chatty and informative but dull and informative.

Performance 2/5

The narrator would have markedly improved this book by a) not reading it at all or b) been giving a ticket for speeding by the police. Nice accent but ...

Story 3/5

As mentioned by another reviewer, this does rather "talk down" to even a layman. I'm not brain dead, thanks. I'd direct the author to Tom Reynolds style (yes, I know it's a pseudonym, I guess this author's is too).

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • SP
  • 04-12-17

Brilliant

Such a brilliant book. I felt Humour, tears and concern whilst listening to this.
It’s written very well!

Downloading the part 2 straight away!

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Its good but, some parts irritating!

I agree with a few of the comments here. I just heard the "prank" near the beginning of the book, after the event with Margaret, where they prank "Brian", he gets so upset he starts banging his head and hyperventilating...? And the author says, brilliant! How is that funny? I had to literally stop reading and come straight to leave a review. I have a feeling that the author of this book would really get on my nerves if i knew him/worked with him, with his "debating" with Mr X - more like arrogance and being argumentative! I can see a lot of times the way he talks about certain situations, he thinks he's the hero, the arrogance seeps out!
He does explain things quite well, although as some others said, he does come across as a little patronising, but I think that part is okay, its good that he explains everything even if it goes into a bit too much info, I'd rather too much than not enough when it comes to medical procedures etc.
All in all I guess its not terrible. It just irritates me in some places, some more than others. But it is still an okay account. I appreciate the other reviewers here suggesting other authors, Im gonna try and find them!

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

.

great book, really interesting, but I wish someone had told him how to pronounce "ascertain" correctly.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

I LOVED it.

Having had a few paramedic visits myself, a number of severe sepsis infections and bowel blockages, I can tell you how amazing these people are. I’ve often wondered what their working shifts are like and what their train of thoughts are on scene. Now I know. It was fascinating to hear how each patient is assessed and subsequently treated and where possible, the outcome. I really enjoyed the technical terms and descriptions and had they not been used this book wouldn’t have been so interesting and gripping. Andy Thompson, I hope you write another book, ....soon. Thank you.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Wow...

Andy, what an amazing book, I am embarking to University as a student paramedic this sept, this book is not only insightful to the situations you have encountered but, the medical terminology and methodology used throughout is very educational. thank you so much for sharing your experiences !

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

A vanity parade like no other

I have read many of the medical memoirs that have become popular in recent years and this is by far the worst.

The author's self-indulgent aggrandisement and tales of his individual heroism are irritating at best, and down right intolerable at worst.

For anyone looking for interesting and entertaining stories of pre-hospital medicine, I strongly recommend "What Could Possibly Go Wrong" by Dr Tony Bleetman.

Save yourself the trouble of this awful narcissistic vanity parade.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Disappointing

I bought this audiobook as I love medical memoirs such as This is Going to Hurt by Adam Kay, and Blood Sweat and Tea by Tom Reynolds. However, this was disappointing. The author comes across as arrogant in most chapters and the grammar is also off. The phrase "hence why" was used multiple times. It felt like a story that could have been told in a few pages, was strung out, with stories going off on tangents, which took away from the essence of the book.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Loved this book

What an interesting insight into the work of a paramedic.
Fantastic narration and really easy to listen to. Even though some dark topics are discussed, this is done with empathy, care and even a little humour. Can’t wait for part 2.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

A great insight into paramedic medicine

Currently training in medicine and found it very rewarding and a great insight for students

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Amazon Customer
  • Amazon Customer
  • 12-04-16

Editor...

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

The stories were padded out wth clumsy descriptions, a bit like an essay written in school. It needed a good editor.

What was most disappointing about Andy Thompson’s story?

The awful, tabloid-style language. I should have known by 'the downright ugly' in the title - made me cringe.

What do you think the narrator could have done better?

I'm not sure if the narrator was reading the grammatical mistakes from the book, or if they were used to authenticate his performance. It was a bit odd.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for PCF
  • PCF
  • 25-04-17

Loved this book!

Great stories. Well written. Laughs and sadness. Just love the British accent. Looking forward to his second book.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Som
  • Som
  • 29-08-15

Great book

Excellent narration by the author, and I thoroughly enjoy the very real life encounters as a working paramedic. As a medic myself I am able to relate to these calls. Will recommend this book to my fellow workers, and student preceptors.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Debra S. Long
  • Debra S. Long
  • 10-07-18

Raunchy and undesireable

I tried to listen to these, I really did. But I do NOT find them humorous in the least, but rather disturbing and disgusting. I would demand refund, but they were granted for free. They are certainly not worth anyone's time.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Keith Riddle
  • Keith Riddle
  • 25-10-17

Ehhhh....not bad

The medicine seems sound, the stories interesting, and the narration is strong. The writing itself seems weak. If you can get past that - and there were points where I struggled - it’s worth a listen.....maybe.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for D. Gullickson
  • D. Gullickson
  • 17-07-17

Great EMS stories

Good Listen, good stories! Recommend to anyone, even if not in the field of Emergency Medical Care

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Leah
  • Leah
  • 20-05-16

Instruction Manual for future or new EMTs

What did you love best about The Dark Side?

The energy of the narrator, and the compassion of the author.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Dark Side?

The 4 month old baby. It felt so shocking as I didn't expect it to be so raw.

What about Pete Nottage’s performance did you like?

His energy.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

Instructions for EMTs

Any additional comments?

I can do without the long explanations however, this was really interesting.