Answering 911

Answering 911

Life in the Hot Seat

Book - 2006
Average Rating:
Rate this:
You answer a call from a fourteen-year-old boy asking for someone to arrest his mother, who is smoking crack in their bathroom. You talk with him until the cops arrive, making sure there are no weapons around and learning that his favorite subject in school is lunch. Five minutes later, you have to deal with someone complaining about his neighbor's clarinet practice.

What is it like to be on the receiving end of desperate calls for help . . . every day? Caroline Burau, a former newspaper reporter and nursing student who couldn't stand the sight of blood, takes a job as an emergency dispatcher because she likes helping people. But on-the-job training at the comm center proves to be more than she bargained for. As she adjusts to a daily life of catastrophe and comedy, domestics and drunks, cops and robbers, junk food and sarcasm, lost cats and suicides, she discovers that crisis can become routine, that coworkers can be mean--that she must continue to care and, at times, learn how to let go.

Praise for Answering 911

"The day may come when I have to dial 911. I hope to God that the person who answers is Caroline Burau or someone like her. Funny, honest, and elegantly simple, this book left me with a sense of grace and hope." --Alison McGhee, author of Shadow Baby, Rainlight, Was It Beautiful? and Falling Boy
Alternative Title: Answering nine-one-one
Publisher: St. Paul, MN : Borealis Books, c2006.
ISBN: 9780873515696
Branch Call Number: 384.64
Characteristics: 206 p. ; 23 cm.


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

AL_HANNAH Jan 05, 2017

That is certainly one job I wouldn't want to do!

Aug 21, 2013

Interesting read if you're looking for an idea of what being a dispatcher is actually like - behind the scenes!

Apr 15, 2008

Loved this book! It was engaging, yet not sugar-coated. Her writing style is honest and funny. Its a great look at a job I've always been curious about.

Feb 21, 2007

I loved this book and look forward to


Add Age Suitability

Aug 21, 2013

oatmealseed thinks this title is suitable for 15 years and over


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings


Find it at SLPL

To Top