Monday, April 13, 2009

Fascinating Nonfiction

I just completed a very satisfying read of Atul Gawande's fascinating book, Complications: A Surgeon's Notes on an Imperfect Science. Medicine may be imperfect, but this book is pretty near flawless. It's not surprising it was a finalist for the 2002 National Book Award for nonfiction. Gawande combines his experience as a surgical resident with his easy, informative writing talents in this book of essays which examine the fallibility of doctors and the challenges and mysteries of working with the human body. Rather than creating a sensationalized account of the mistakes doctors make, Gawande presents the variety of challenges they face along with the philosophy, science, ethics, and even economics involved in practicing medicine today. I am so glad I gave this one to my sister for her birthday back in January (insert evil genius laugh here). I knew it would make it back to my night table eventually.
Speaking of putting nonfiction reading in the hands of others, I have been selectively sending out my resume hoping to go back to teaching in the fall, and my ten year old son got hold of my resume. I've never seen him so intrigued by anything in his life. He even requested a copy of his own. He seems fascinated by and skeptical of any experiences I had before his birth. Moreover, he had never really thought about the fact that grownups have to work to find work. So I guess that's a good thing, but it's kind of weird at the same time.

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