Jennifer D's Reviews > The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer

The Emperor of All Maladies by Siddhartha Mukherjee
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Sep 21, 14

bookshelves: books-i-own, nonfiction, effing-awesome, 2011-books, biography
Read from February 22 to 26, 2011, read count: 1

Mukherjee spent nearly 7 years researching, compiling and writing this biography of cancer. While he was in medical school. Say what? Dude, apparently, wasn't busy enough.

This book is stellar. We are given a detailed history of the disease, but also of the research and the doctors and scientists who have spent their lives trying to understand cancer and find a cure. Interspersed, we are introduced to patients - both those who lived and those whose malignancies were just too fierce. Mukherjee manages to distill complex information into a format that not just readable, but un-put-down-able and humane.

This is one of those books everyone should read.
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Comments (showing 1-7 of 7) (7 new)

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Julie Sounds like it could be interesting. Can't wait to see what you think of it.


Jennifer D Julie wrote: "Sounds like it could be interesting. Can't wait to see what you think of it."

So far...even though I am only 70-odd pages in, it is fantastic!


message 3: by Alasse (new)

Alasse Nice! I actually watched a very uplifting cancer surgery today. Father of three little girls, the intervention removed the entire thing. He's cancer-free now. Just being around when that sort of thing happens makes me feel cool.


message 4: by Jennifer (last edited Feb 22, 2011 04:20PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jennifer D Alasse wrote: "Nice! I actually watched a very uplifting cancer surgery today. Father of three little girls, the intervention removed the entire thing. He's cancer-free now. Just being around when that sort of th..."

Wow! That is amazing, Alasse. I have an interest in this book as, two years ago, my best-friend's dad (who was my "other father") had glioblastoma. Reduction surgery was marginally successful, but the growth was extremely "tentacled" (I don't know if that's a real word, but that's how we referred to it, all octopus-like with arms reaching out everywhere). He also underwent radiation and chemo but was well aware his time was limited. He was diagnosed at the end of January, 2008 and died on September 11th, later that year. His kids and I, along with his wife, cared for him in his home, which is where he wanted to be to end his days. Having that personal experience with cancer...and such a nasty cancer at that (okay, they are all nasty cancers; I didn't mean to sound insensitive!!). As soon as this book came out, I knew I had to read it. That I am doing it back-to-back with The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks is making for some profound and deeply thought-filled moments.

I am so happy to hear of a happy ending with cancer, and that you were able to be a witness to this!


message 5: by Jayme (new) - added it

Jayme I'm excited you're reading this!


Jennifer D Jayme wrote: "I'm excited you're reading this!"

It is SO good!! Like really, really great.


message 7: by Meghan (new) - added it

Meghan Awesome! Looking forward to reading this one now.


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