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A Heavy Reckoning: War, Medicine and Survival in Afghanistan and Beyond

4.45  ·  Rating details ·  47 ratings  ·  8 reviews
What happens when you reach the threshold of life and death - and come back?

As long as humans have lived together on the planet, there have been wars, and injured soldiers and civilians. But today, as we engage in wars across the globe with increasingly sophisticated technology, we are able to bring people back from ever closer encounters with death. But how do we do it, a
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Hardcover, 320 pages
Published May 25th 2017 by Wellcome Collection
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4.45  · 
Rating details
 ·  47 ratings  ·  8 reviews


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Olwen
Jan 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
Loved this insight into the medical treatment of blast casualties. Well written and worth reading.
Katia M. Davis
Jan 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is a very important book. It is very well researched and written. It follows closely the experiences of individuals involved with blast injury and traumatic limb amputation. I found it astonishing to learn that many of the things we are learning about this type of injury today, were actually learnt during WWI and the information was lost. The author hopes currently that this will not be the case today. We learn about injury from the point of wounding, through initial surgery, return to Engl ...more
Jill Johnson
Jun 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I found this book very informative but it isn't just a book about war and injury it is about survival and particularly survival against the odds. It is about medical advancement and the human cost of war but never loses sight of the individual and their own personal stories. There are parts of this book that will stay with me for a long time such as surgeons in camp bastion that walk the sniffer dogs on leads to get a sense of home and to help cope with the appalling day to day horrors of war. W ...more
Susan
Nov 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I bought this after hearing Emily in conversation with John McCarthy at the Budleigh Salterton Literary Festival. I’m not a great reader of non-fiction books so approached this with a bit of trepidation. However, it’s so well written with stories of personal triumph, ingenuity, and resilience woven throughout that it was a totally engrossing read. It’s not a comfortable read by any means but I have an even greater admiration for and appreciation of those who serve our country and those in the m ...more
Amanda Bringans
Aug 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is a must read. Compelling mix of science and stunning writing on a fascinating and often sad and by turns uplifting topic. Amazing men and women whose stories are told so well. Loved it.
Sheila Matharu
Sep 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book was recommended by a friend I met by chance during a trip through Southern Africa. I have since recommended it to other people. There are many things I love about A Heavy Reckoning. I am grateful for Emily’s accessible explanations of pathophysiological processes, medical treatments and procedures. I appreciate how she gives the casualties of war a human dimension by bringing forth the stories of a few individuals who adapted and strived despite their injuries, whilst reminding the rea ...more
Sue Davis
Feb 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
What's freaking amazing is that the author (a historian) so completely, accurately and beautifully describes what have really been my very personal first hand experiences (deploying with a Role 3 hospital, rehabilitation of war-injured Soldiers, wrestling with how to care for PTSD-TBI-Chronic Pain). . .and yet I could never cover it all or explain it nearly as eloquently. Really amazing work. I noticed some did not like her writing style, but I enjoyed the way she wove stories about patients and ...more
Kathleen Romito
May 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
This was a very well researched and informative history of a very important subject. I appreciated the blending of historical facts with the first person stories from people who'd been there. Thank you Ms Mayhew for writing about this difficult, but important, subject. My only complaint is that her very readable, plain language account of this history is sometimes a bit too conversational. I appreciate complete sentences.
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