When Breath Becomes Air

Author
Paul Kalanithi   Abraham Verghese 
Summary
<b>#1&#xa0;<i>NEW YORK TIMES</i>&#xa0;BESTSELLER • PULITZER PRIZE FINALIST •&#xa0;This inspiring, exquisitely observed memoir finds hope and beauty in the face of insurmountable odds as an idealistic young neurosurgeon attempts to answer the question <i>What makes a life worth living?</i></b><br /><br /> <b>NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY</b><br /> <b><i>The New York Times Book Review •&#xa0;People • </i>NPR<i> •&#xa0;The Washington Post •&#xa0;Slate •&#xa0;Harper’s Bazaar •&#xa0;Esquire&#xa0;•&#xa0;Time Out New York •&#xa0;Publishers Weekly •&#xa0;BookPage</i></b><br /><br /> <b>Finalist for the PEN Center USA Literary Award in Creative Nonfiction and the Books for a Better Life Award in Inspirational Memoir</b><br /><br />At the age of thirty-six, on the verge of completing a decade’s worth of training as a neurosurgeon, Paul Kalanithi was diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer. One day he was a doctor treating the dying, and the next he was a patient struggling to live. And just like that, the future he and his wife had imagined evaporated. <i>When Breath Becomes Air</i> chronicles Kalanithi’s transformation from a naïve medical student “possessed,” as he wrote, “by the question of what, given that all organisms die, makes a virtuous and meaningful life” into a neurosurgeon at Stanford working in the brain, the most critical place for human identity, and finally into a patient and new father confronting his own mortality.<br /><br /> What makes life worth living in the face of death? What do you do when the future, no longer a ladder toward your goals in life, flattens out into a perpetual present? What does it mean to have a child, to nurture a new life as another fades away? These are some of the questions Kalanithi wrestles with in this profoundly moving, exquisitely observed memoir.<br /><br /> Paul Kalanithi died in March 2015, while working on this book, yet his words live on as a guide and a gift to us all. “I began to realize that coming face to face with my own mortality, in a sense, had changed nothing and everything,” he wrote. “Seven words from Samuel Beckett began to repeat in my head: ‘I can’t go on. I’ll go on.’” <i>When Breath Becomes Air</i> is an unforgettable, life-affirming reflection on the challenge of facing death and on the relationship between doctor and patient, from a brilliant writer who became both.<br /><br /><b>Praise for <i>When Breath Becomes Air</i></b><br /><br />“I guarantee that finishing this book and then forgetting about it is simply not an option. . . . Part of this book’s tremendous impact comes from the obvious fact that its author was such a brilliant polymath. And part comes from the way he conveys what happened to him—passionately working and striving, deferring gratification, waiting to live, learning to die—so well.”<b>—Janet Maslin, <i>The New York Times</i></b><br /><br /> “An emotional investment well worth making: a moving and thoughtful memoir of family, medicine and literature. It is, despite its grim undertone, accidentally inspiring.”<b>—<i>The Washington Post</i></b><br /><br /> “Possesses the gravity and wisdom of an ancient Greek tragedy . . . [Kalanithi] delivers his chronicle in austere, beautiful prose. The book brims with insightful reflections on mortality that are especially poignant coming from a trained physician familiar with what lies ahead.”<b>—<i>The Boston Globe</i></b><br /><br /> “Devastating and spectacular . . . [Kalanithi] is so likeable, so relatable, and so humble, that you become immersed in his world and forget where it’s all heading.”<b>—<i>USA Today</i></b>
Genre
Biographies & Memoirs  Books  Nonfiction  Social Science  Philosophy 
Price
$12.99
Average User Rating
5.0
User Rating Count
4866
Release Date
2016-01-12


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