Yes. This book humanizes doctors and demystifies medicine, revealing its errors without provoking fear. Maybe it's paradoxical, but calling into question medicine's perfectibility is actually kind of empowering because it means we can't let doctors bear all the responsibility for a well-functioning health care system -- we have to look at the whole ecosystem of hospitals and managed care to understand why things go wrong, and then take part in improving the situation. Gawande densely layers interesting anecdotes and interweaves medical marvels with ordinary human experiences -- particularly those of patients. Despite being nominally autobiographical, this isn't a compendium of war stories. Gawande is balanced, self-aware and, surprisingly for someone so successful in the mainstream, not self-aggrandizing. He only involves himself to the extent necessary to round out the anecdotes.
The book loses focus towards the end and does start to feel a little like an anthology of stories and/or essays, and I'm not sure the overall thesis is well sustained, but so far it's the best thing I've read on the practice of modern medicine.
His account of the congress of American surgeons was funny and poignant. He clearly has a goofy sense of humour and an anthropologist's eye for professional culture -- the good and the bad. This was one of the moments that did the most for me in humanizing surgeons without making them look foolish or, worse, inept.
His narration was pretty good. He mispronounces stuff from time to time which can be a little distracting, but overall he was pleasant enough to listen to.
Not really. There's no storyline or protagonist, and it jumps around in time a lot.
I have in fact listened to it 3 times! This book is dense with facts and compelling, well-selected anecdotes. It also provides a brief history of doping in American cycling, putting everything in a bit of context. Looking back on the whole sordid tale years later, it's really unbelievable just how many lives were tangled up in this affair, and the lengths people were willing to go to to sustain a Big Lie -- including international audiences, who found Armstrong an irresistible hero. I really felt like I was being given an insider's perspective. I remember watching Armstrong win the '99 tour and feeling the unbelievability of his dominance is what made him so awesome. His charisma, too. To now find out all the stuff that was going on in the background is disorienting to say the least. Like many, I do not feel that his admissions have been sufficiently contrite given the apparent venality of his behaviour and the viciousness of his attacks on those who dared question his mythology. It's really hard to feel much sympathy for the guy.
Travis Tygart, CEO of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency. His persistence in following the facts and building a meticulous, airtight case against Armstrong, as well as his resilience and composure in the face of a relentless media campaign by Armstrong's team to discredit him make him a role model for American prosecutors.
Quite a good performance, marred only by his propensity to put on accents when reciting quotes by foreign interlocutors. The British accent was particularly irksome.
I have, in fact, listened to it several times! This is one of my favourite books of all time and Prebble's reading truly does it justice. Absolutely spell-binding.
It's hard to choose just one -- Lansing's text and Prebble's reading create so many indelible scenes. For sheer pathos, you simply can't beat Thoraf Sorlle's reaction when he finally recognizes Shackleton -- and is suddenly seized by the almost unimaginable suffering, courage, and providence that have led up to that moment.
The voyage of the James Caird across the South Atlantic will change the way you think about adventure, endurance, and even the idea of fate.
I haven't read the print version.
Everything. This was wondrous, sprawling, and ultimately heartbreaking.
No, but this one made me immediately search for other performances by him and I was disappointed to find so few.
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