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When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi
  

When Breath Becomes Air

Biography / Autobiography   The Real World   All Shortlists and Winners   eBook Favourites   eBook Favourites   

RRP £8.99

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Shortlisted for the Wellcome Prize 2017.

Shortlisted for the Books Are My Bag Non-Fiction Award 2016.

What makes life worth living in the face of death? What do you do when life is catastrophically interrupted? What does it mean to have a child as your own life fades away? This inspiring and remarkably candid memoir of an immensely talented surgeon whose life was cut short through inoperable cancer, is the kind that will stay with you long after you've read the final page. It is the sort of book that you will begin and finish in a sitting purely because it is so unputdownable. Incredibly emotive yes, but it also offers a life-affirming reflection on facing our mortality and on the relationship between doctor and patient, from a gifted writer who became both. Kalanithi died while working on this profoundly moving memoir which he wrote with no hint of why me but he did wrestle with his faith. His family helped him right to the end and his wife wrote the final chapter.

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Synopsis

When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi

THE NEW YORK TIMES NUMBER ONE BESTSELLER. Finishing this book and then forgetting about it is simply not an option...Unmissable . (New York Times). At the age of thirty-six, on the verge of completing a decade's training as a neurosurgeon, Paul Kalanithi was diagnosed with inoperable lung cancer. One day he was a doctor treating the dying, the next he was a patient struggling to live. When Breath Becomes Air chronicles Kalanithi's transformation from a medical student asking what makes a virtuous and meaningful life into a neurosurgeon working in the core of human identity - the brain - and finally into a patient and a new father.

Reviews

A vital book about dying. Awe-inspiring and exquisite. Obligatory reading for the living. Nigella Lawson

Powerful and poignant... Elegantly written posthumous memoir... Should be compulsory for anyone who intends to be a doctor... A profound reflection on the meaning of life. Daisy Goodwin The Sunday Times

A great, indelible book ... as intimate and illuminating as Atul Gawande's Being Mortal, to cite only one recent example of a doctor's book that has had exceptionally wide appeal ... I guarantee that finishing this book and then forgetting about it is simply not an option ... gripping from the start ... None of it is maudlin. Nothing is exaggerated. As he wrote to a friend: It's just tragic enough and just imaginable enough. And just important enough to be unmissable. New York Times

A tremendous book, crackling with life, animated by wonder and by the question of how we should live. Paul Kalanithi lived and died in the pursuit of excellence, and by this testimonial, he achieved it. Gavin Francis, author of Adventures in Human Being Exceptional.

Extraordinary...Remarkable... luminous, revelatory memoir about mortality and what makes being alive meaningful ... Lyrical, intimate, insistent and profound. Kalanithi had the mind of the polymath and the ear of a poet. Heather Hodson Daily Telegraph

Rattling. Heartbreaking. Beautiful. Atul Gawande, author of Being Mortal

Thanks to When Breath Becomes Air, those of us who never met Paul Kalanithi will both mourn his death and benefit from his life. This one of a handful of books I consider to be a universal donor - I would recommend it to anyone, everyone. Ann Patchett, author of Bel Canto

Paul Kalanithi's memoir, When Breath Becomes Air... split my head open with its beauty. Truly. Madly. Deeply. Cheryl Strayed, author of Wild

A remarkable book... Kalanithi writes very well, in a plain and matter-of-fact way, without a trace of self-pity, and you are immediately gripped and carried along... [He] was clearly a deeply thoughtful and compassionate man, and his death is a great loss to medicine, but at least he has left this remarkable book behind. Dr Henry Marsh Observer

About the Author

Paul Kalanithi was a neurosurgeon and writer. He held degrees in English literature, human biology, and history and philoso-phy of science and medicine from Stanford and Cambridge universities before graduating from Yale School of Medicine. He also received the American Academy of Neu-rological Surgery's highest award for research. His reflections on doctoring and illness have been published in the New York Times, the Washington Post and the Paris Review Daily. Kalanithi died in March 2015, aged 37. He is survived by his wife, Lucy, and their daughter, Elizabeth Acadia.

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Book Info

Publication date

3rd January 2017

Author

Paul Kalanithi

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Author 'Like for Like'
    recommendations

Publisher

Vintage an imprint of Vintage Publishing

Format

Hardback
256 pages

Categories

Biography / Autobiography
The Real World
All Shortlists and Winners
eBook Favourites
eBook Favourites

Memoirs
Neurosurgery
Coping with illness & specific conditions

ISBN

9781784701994

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