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3.75 of 5 stars 3.75  ·  rating details  ·  155 ratings  ·  20 reviews

Inside every hospital exists a world no outsider has been allowed to see

Written by a former doctor, Bodies is a novel of almost unbearable power and intensity. It is also a moving portrait of the loss of innocence, the healing power of sexual love, and of a young man's quest for redemption in a world that's lost its sense of right and wrong. Jed Mercurio, the man behind t

Hardcover, 381 pages
Published February 1st 2003 by Goldmann (first published 2002)
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Jed Mercurio has made a second career out of exposing the details of his first.

The British author trained as a medical doctor at Birmingham University and worked at various hospitals in the West Midlands before tapping his experiences for two BBC television dramas and now his first novel, Bodies.

This terse, gut-wrenching account of what goes on at a large English hospital follows an idealistic junior doctor from his first jittery IV to his exhausted disillusionment at the realization that medic
Only worth a 3 star in some respects, but I enjoyed the depiction of hospital life. The ending was clumsily clipped, however, and kind of put me in mind of one of those crime procedurals where the gritty cop sticks his hands in his pockets and acknowledges the futility of challenging the system whilst smoking a battered dog end and chucking the chin of his attractive, naive assistant, hoping the world won't get her down the way it got him AT THE END OF EVERY SINGLY EPISODE.

So the ending is a bit
Bodies is a book with the medical profession at its core. It follows the life of a young and naive freshly graduated doctor, from his first experiences as a casualty doctor onwards. It's brutally open in its coverage of his everyday life (if you're one of the whining killjoys who pipes up "Howcome they never go to the toilet in the movies" then you'll enjoy this book). Every nuance of his life from pimple popping to murderous thoughts are illustrated which makes the book startlingly candid and i ...more
Sam Still Reading
Dec 27, 2009 Sam Still Reading rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Sam Still Reading by: saw the TV series
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mercurio's Ascent is one of my favourite novels, and I though his American Adulterer, a novelisation of the presidency of JFK, very good. Bodies is his first novel and, like American Adulterer, is not one whose subject appeals to me. It's about a young houseman in a NHS hospital. And it's grim stuff. It' about a work culture which cannot distinguish between a mistake, incompetence or negligence, and so protects the perpetrators of all three. The narrator witnesses a series of incidents, but can ...more
Just given this book a second read, some 5 years after I first read it. An uncomfortable read, and more so because its written by an ex presumably he knows. Also uncomfortable personally because of my own baggage about the medical world and the circumstances of my mother's death. In the book the hospital closes ranks in the face of mistakes which result in death and injury. One such mistake is made by the storyteller, who absolves himself in the end by searching out the family and fessi ...more
Rachel McQuoid
i wasnt expecting too much from this but it was a really good portrayal of life as a newly qualified doctor. if anyone was studying medicine and then read this, they would seriously drop out. it was written by an ex doctor so its really accurate in what is wrong with the patient and the diagnosis and treatment.

i like to learn things from books and from this i learnt how overworked and underpaid doctors are! great read, it has quite a lot of adult themes so i would reccommend it for an older rea
The author is a former medical doctor, and brings apparent credibility to this rather black novel. I frequently found myself wondering just where the balance between fiction and autobiography lies in the incidents and behaviour which form the backbone of the narrative.
Don't read this book if you think you might end up in hospital any time soon.
Written by the man behind the television series Cardiac Arrest and former physician, Bodies is a realistic view inside every hospital. It portrays a world no outsider has been allowed to see before. It's intense and powerful but also very moving and sometimes funny as it portrays the loss of innocence. Very realistic and gritty!
Ruth Downie
Intense, compelling and very convincing, altho' as a non-medic I can't judge how well it reflects the reality inside the world of an NHS hospital - which is half the point of the story. The descriptive writing is superb, although what's described is often not for the fainthearted.
Oct 05, 2008 Fiona rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people considering a medical degree!
A bit scary considering the author is actually a doctor. I imagine he's exaggerated the morbidity of the storyline, though I presume it does go on a lot.

Quite a good book all in all, though depressing and a bit dark. It depends what mood you're in and if you like hospitals.
Vincent Eaton
His next two novels (thus far), "Ascent" and "An American Adulterer" are major novels in my skimpy notebook of major novels. This, his first, is relentless in its medical horrors, and I needed to put it aside between Parts 1, 2, & 3. But worth the investment of time.
Henna Achhpal
A strictly okay read. Puts you off hospitals a bit, it might scare you enough to never trust a doctor again. The undertone is very cliched - trying to show the inside world of a big bad world that looks all saintly/glamourous to the outsider.
Brilliant read - worryingly honest. This is not the tv series - this is the idea they based the series on. Cracking good read though - a junior doctor's first year out of med school. Don't read it in hospital!
Ruth Brookes
Gritty and graphic, this book both repulsed & fascinated me, while the moral questions it raises have stayed with me. Not an easy read, yet I couldn't put it down.
I felt like I had seen it all before on TV and cinema screens. And I didn't enjoy all the suffering on display.
Well-written, moves-right-along novel of life as a junior hospital doctor in the U.K.
Roz Morris
Read with a strong stomach. The unforgettable trauma of working in an ER.
Winston Brown
Sexy story, good ending, shame about the mediacl jargon.
Hazel McHaffie
Wry medical malignant humour.
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Jed Mercurio is a British author; TV and film producer and (non practicing) medical doctor.

He also writes under the name John MacUre. He created the television series Cardiac Arrest, Bodies and the sci-fi miniseries Invasion: Earth (1998). Bodies is based on his novel of the same name and earned him two BAFTA Television Award nominations and two RTS Award nominations. He has also written and direc
More about Jed Mercurio...
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