Ethiopia with Cutting for Stone

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“We are all fixing what’s broken. It’s the work of a lifetime.”–Marion Stone, Cutting for Stone

  • Here’s what happens:
    • This is the powerful story of Dr. Marion Stone, a surgeon who explores his emotional relationship with his family–specifically his formerly conjoined twin brother Shiva and his estranged biological father Thomas Stone–through an in-depth history of his conflict-ridden conception and unusual upbringing.
  • It’s good because:
    • It’s written with tenderness and worldliness, with a style that accounts for both the complex issues of poverty and the intimate challenges a family faces. It’s rare to find a writer who can both weave an emotional story as well as equip the reader with a variety of technical knowledge without compromising the urgent sincerity of the plot, but Verghese does it with ease. Seriously, who would’ve thought the words “labia” and “fistula” would feel perfectly natural in a touching exploration of family?
  • Read if:
    • You enjoy a well-rounded, refined literary story. The flawed humanity of each character is so perfectly tangible, and the unique details brought to the plot by its setting in an Ethiopian hospital make this story intricate and special. It is equally familiar in its emotional rawness and novel in its third world challenges and insights.

Up next: Chile with Isabel Allende’s Daughter of Fortune!

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