Book Six: Cutting for Stone

Cutting for Stone, Abraham Verghese

This is a lovely little book. Oh wait, did I say little? I meant, this is a lovely nearly 700 page book. But still. It's pretty lovely. There are some amazingly drawn characters--characters I'd love to know personally--in an epic story that starts by chronicling the life of an east Indian nun who makes her way to Addis Ababa to work in a hospital, where she later becomes pregnant and dies after giving birth to twins, while the suspected father, a doctor at the hospital, runs away after she dies. The story is told through the eyes of one of those twins as he and his brother, raised by two doctors at the hospital, also become doctors. Since Verghese is a doctor himself, there is a huge amount of medical detail, something which I found fascinating.

I definitely enjoyed the actual experience of reading this, though my main issue with it is that it reeks of sentimentality. Especially the end. I'm okay with a bit of it here and there, but I hate feeling like I'm being manipulated by a story. And in this one everything comes together just way too nicely.


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