Cutting for Stone

Cutting for Stone

4.3 (358,260 ratings by Goodreads)
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4.3 (358,260 ratings by Goodreads)

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A sweeping, emotionally riveting first novel--an enthralling family saga of Africa and America, doctors and patients, exile and home.
Marion and Shiva Stone are twin brothers born of a secret union between a beautiful Indian nun and a brash British surgeon at a mission hospital in Addis Ababa. Orphaned by their mother's death in childbirth and their father's disappearance, bound together by a preternatural connection and a shared fascination with medicine, the twins come of age as Ethiopia hovers on the brink of revolution. Yet it will be love, not politics--their passion for the same woman--that will tear them apart and force Marion, fresh out of medical school, to flee his homeland. He makes his way to America, finding refuge in his work as an intern at an underfunded, overcrowded New York City hospital. When the past catches up to him--nearly destroying him--Marion must entrust his life to the two men he thought he trusted least in the world: the surgeon father who abandoned him and the brother who betrayed him.
An unforgettable journey into one man's remarkable life, and an epic story about the power, intimacy, and curious beauty of the work of healing others.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 541 pages
  • 169 x 233 x 47mm | 821g
  • Random House Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 0375414495
  • 9780375414497
  • 214,089

Review quote

"Abraham Verghese is a doctor, an accomplished memoirist and, as he proves in "Cutting for Stone, " something of a magician as a novelist. This sprawling, 50-year epic begins with a touch of alchemy: the birth of conjoined twins to an Indian nun in an Ethiopian hospital in 1954. The likely father, a British surgeon, flees upon the mother's death, and the (now separated) baby boys are adopted by a loving Indian couple who run the hospital. Filled with mystical scenes and deeply felt characters-and opening a fascinating window onto the Third World-"Cutting for Stone" is an underdog and a winner. Shades of "Slumdog Millionaire.""
-Jocelyn McClurg, "USA Today"
"A novel set in Africa bears a heavy burden. The author must bring the continent home to help the reader sit in a chair and imagine vast, ancient, sorrowful, beautiful Africa. In the last decade I've read books narrated by characters homesick for Africa; books by or about child soldiers; books about politics; books full of splintering history. "Cutting for Stone" is the first straightforward novel set in and largely about Africa that I've read in a good long time-the kind Richard Russo or Cormac McCarthy might write, the kind that shows how history and landscape and accidents of birth and death conspire to create the story of a single life. Perhaps it is because the narrator is a doctor that you know there will be pain, healing, distance, perspective and a phoenix rising from the ashes of human error. Marion Stone reconstructs his half-century with a child's wonder . . . Verghese knows that beauty is the best way to draw us in . . . The landscape and the characters who live and work [at Missing Hospital] create something greater than a community, more like an organism. The intimacy of the twins . . . the ghostly purity of their mother and the daily rhythms of the hospital create an inhabitable, safe place, on and off the page. In lesser hands, melodrama would be irresistible . . . but Verghese has cr
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About Abraham Verghese

Abraham Verghese is Professor and Senior Associate Chair for the Theory and Practice of Medicine at the Stanford University School of Medicine. He was the founding director of the Center for Medical Humanities & Ethics at the University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio, where he is now an adjunct professor. He is the author of" My Own Country, " a 1994 NBCC Finalist and a" Time" Best Book of the Year, and" The Tennis Partner, " a" New York Times" Notable Book. A graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop, he has published essays and short stories that have appeared in "The New Yorker, The New York Times, The Atlantic Monthly, Esquire, Granta, The Wall Street Journal, " and elsewhere. He lives in Palo Alto, California.
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Rating details

358,260 ratings
4.3 out of 5 stars
5 53% (188,226)
4 31% (112,486)
3 11% (40,148)
2 3% (11,465)
1 2% (5,935)
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