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The Citadel

4.16  ·  Rating details ·  5,664 ratings  ·  385 reviews
"Cronin's distinguished achievement....No one could have written as fine, honest, and moving a study of a young doctor as The Citadel without possessing great literary taste and skill." --The Atlantic Monthly
A groundbreaking novel of its time and a National Book Award winner.
The Citadel follows the life of Andrew Manson, a young and idealistic Scottish doctor, as he naviga
Paperback, 368 pages
Published November 30th 1983 by Little, Brown and Company (first published 1937)
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Emilia Pacurar It's because we usually feel sorry for ourselves and an authority in the field. Facing this, all others' passivity and routine are masked by the…moreIt's because we usually feel sorry for ourselves and an authority in the field. Facing this, all others' passivity and routine are masked by the rethoric of a fake cosmpolitan concern.(less)

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4.16  · 
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 ·  5,664 ratings  ·  385 reviews

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The Citadel is the morality tale of the initially idealistic Scottish Doctor Andrew Manson who starts off working in the mining towns of the South Wales valleys (view spoiler) before descending into the vanity fair of fashionable London doctors, who specialise in conditions which cost a lot of money to treat, where he reaches a crisis point before returning to the narrow path of virtue.

In the Welsh Valley
Sep 27, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Oh this is wonderful story - a 1937 publication concerning primarily, the life of a young doctor investigating lung disease rife amongst miners and social conditions in mid Wales. Fully recommended.
May 03, 2019 rated it liked it
The Citadel won the National Book Award for Novels in 1937. It was written by A.J. Cronin

The dialogue in this semi-autobiographical story about a talented young Welsh doctor was quite good. The cases and threads were also convincing. The doctor, Andrew, and his wife, Christine, were both likable characters.

The problem that I had with the book is that the prose is very choppy and not always a pleasure to read. The death of a major character does not garner more than three pages in the book. In t
Jan 17, 2011 rated it really liked it
This book was written in 1937. It is about an idealistic young doctor who starts off poor and has a great heart for the poor and the sick. He marries a wonderful young teacher named Christine and they are very happy, not having much materially, but rich in love and plans for the future. They begin their life in the mining town of Wales, where he begins research involving the men with breathing problems due to their exposure to the dust in the underground mines.
They eventually move to London.
Aug 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Wonderful. I picked this up for $1 at a used book store. I didn't recognize the title or the author but figured, what do I have to lose, it's only a buck, right?

Once I started reading, it all came back to me. I read this twenty years ago and in my mind I lumped it with Francis Brett Young's "Dr. Bradley Remembers" which is another great book, high on the list for a re-read, and very similar in style and subject matter to "Citadel".

You know a good book when twenty years later you still know all t
May 08, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Instead of telling you what the story is like, I'd rather tell you what I felt like when reading it.

My heart intertwined with the main character's heart in a firm grasp, Cronin made the character come alive for me - I felt each little bit of happiness, stressfulness and sadness in those droplets of ink. The main character's personality growth was astounding.

I recommend this book especially to everyone considering a career as a doctor.
Apr 29, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Wanda
Recommended to Laura by: Bettie
This is the story of a young country doctor life and how he struggled to become a successful doctor in a big city.

Andrew Manson, a young Scotsman man, started his professional life in the mines of Wales where he worked in a tough condition by paying part of his salary to a senior and reputed local doctor. He dedicated part of his life studying lung diseases which was the primary disease found in most of the local miners.

In order to improve his career, he moves to London with his wife - a school
Raghu Vamsy
Dec 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Back in the day when I was a kid in hostel... The principal reason I treasured going back home for the holidays was to pounce on the mostly untouched private library of a crazy uncle. The books he owned, although withered with the passage of time, were absolute treasures to possess. The Citadel was one of those books.

My mother is a doctor and somehow this book - and it's subsequent movie adaptation - had stayed with her all her life since she'd been first introduced to it. Therefore it came hig
Jul 13, 2009 rated it it was amazing
This is the third time I have read this book and enjoy it more each time. Cronin is a master at character development and a pleasure to read. This book illustrates clearly the Thomas S. Monson quote, "Decisions determine destiny." Yet, the author's confidence in the basic goodness of most people leaves both the characters and the reader with hope and not despair.
Ahmed Magdy
Aug 20, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This novel was simply a cornerstone in the development of my character, life, and principles. The personal conflicts a young doctor faces, described by the very interesting style of A.J.Cronin, can take your breath away and make you eager for the ending and even after that, you will be indulged for a while in the acts of a poor young doctor and if what he did was right or wrong!!!
Jamie Collins
3.5 stars. This 1937 novel tells the story of a new doctor who begins his career in 1924 in a small Welsh mining village. At this time, young medical professionals were beginning to realize that the old remedies and medications were useless, if not outright harmful, and that the medical establishment was criminally stagnated. (This is covered, to some extent, in James Herriot’s novels, concerning veterinary medicine.)

Dr. Manson has an earnest desire to improve his profession and to make his mark
Nov 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I thoroughly enjoyed this involved tale of medical ethics in a different time and place. Dr. Manson’s development as a doctor exploring priorities, intertwined with his personal struggles over financial goals and the marital conflicts produced from it, make for a great story. Of course it is dated, but the humanity shines through.
Feb 24, 2009 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 07, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical
A very interesting read. The moral of the story will always be relevant – a young, poor and idealistic doctor is dragged into the world of moneymaking and, of course, there’s a high price to pay to go back to being an honest professional and a decent human being.

It’s written in the 1930s but I just couldn’t get over of how the character of the wife, Christine, was treated not just by the doctor but by the author. That and the easiness with which some complex problems were resolved put me off at
Mar 10, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I never read any of the novels written by A.J Cronin before but after reading this book, I was impressed. This book teaches about moral and ethical side of medical profession. Ending was also brilliant. I highly recommend this book.
Jan 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
This was a lovely, old-fashioned novel. It has been in the back of my mind for years as it was one of my mother's favorites.

It's the story of a young idealistic doctor, starting out in a Welsh mining town in the early part of the 20th century. The medical system is terrible, and Dr Andrew Manson is continually frustrated by it, even as he moves out to London and into private practice. Written in 1937, the story is subtle, particularly compared to most modern fiction. (view spoiler)
Jul 04, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics

This book portrait everything I like in a book.

Has a good story, it has a beginning, a middle and an end, great characters that grow as timeline advances, a full- well- constructed review of english society at that time, all mixed with a few surprises and a fast paced rhythm.
Nov 25, 2017 rated it liked it
Old fashioned novel about medical ethics of a young doctor ,around 1924. There is a morale dillema about treatment and profit, that still exists . But the heroe was unlicable to me, for he was unfair to his wife, captius, and overpedanting to monay.
Jul 29, 2007 rated it liked it
You know you're reading an old book when you read about "gay meals" (among other outdated phrases). According to the cover, this was adapted by Masterpiece Theatre and I can see why: it's very much their sort of story, almost epical in scope.

Andrew is a poor Scotsman, newly graduated from medical school. He finds a position as an assistant in the mining valleys of Wales - of course, the system is unfair, but he's a great doctor and makes friends within the community. Then he's pushed out, and mo
Jul 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Insanely amazing!!!!
Feb 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing
A masterpiece, especially for doctors! A must read book!
Cricket Muse
Feb 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A solid classic. Strong, memorable characters, engaging storyline, and enriching details come together to purport the tale of a young, penniless doctor who rises out of the obscurity of backwoods coal mining towns to becoming a rich, well-respected London physician. His trading out of idealism for a comfortable life comes with great costs, yet the story just falls short of moralism. Due to the style found in the time period of publication,some of the story techniques are a bit antiquated, as in ...more
Linda Lpp
Mar 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Read so long ago, but do remember loving this book. Can still picture the cover..
Jun 20, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction
Andrew Manson, fresh out of university, is ready to take on the world. Full of zeal and passion to change the world of medicine for the better, Dr. Manson has a desire to research and treat pulmonary disease, specifically tuberculosis, that seems to be the culprit especially among the mining population.

In this novel the reader follows Andrew Manson along his path from one disappointment to another, until he finally caves in to the draw of materialism and for a while, loses his dream. Will he eve
Aug 12, 2009 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Adults and older teens
Recommended to Meri by: Book club
This is a very thought provoking and engaging read about a poor young man who starts of in medicine, learning a lot by on the job training in early 1920's Wales. It is both a love story, a life story and a story about ethics and morality. The reader is steered to what is right, but the characters aren't always, which is much like life.

It is also particularly interesting to see how both far we've come in medicine and health care, and yet still how much remains the same! Greed verses honesty will
Jun 20, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics
The Citadel tells the tale of dr. Manson from the time when he was an assistant doctor in a poor countryside until he was a rich and successful doctor in London. This story concentrates mainly on the evolution (and fall) of this doctor. First he is characterized as intelligent, ambitious and driven to change the old and corrupt medical system around him into a more practical and modern as the medicine of that time was evolving; but after he gains fame and money, he gets caught in the system, bec ...more
Almina Carnarvon
Almina, Lady Carnarvon, who ran a succession of nursing homes and hospitals for Society folk in London between 1927 and 1943 is the inspiration for "Ida Sherrington" the proprietress of " the most fashionable nursing home in London" featured on pages 200-1 of The Citadel ( 26th Impression published by Victor Gollancz.)

The description of Ida being " short, stout and extremely full blooded" with her bright red face "so thickly covered with powder the result was a mauve complexion almost the colour
Feb 14, 2011 rated it really liked it
This book was recommended to me by my Granny. Despite somewhat archaic English (it was written in the 1930s), the narrative was very captivating. It is a story of a young, pennyless doctor full of ideals, who gets side-tracked by material success, but learns the hard way that there are other things to make one happy. The description of medical practices of the time was very valuable. The book was actually credited with assisting the formation of the National Health Service in the U.K. It was als ...more
David K. Lemons
The only reason I ever knew about this book was that I kept seeing it in dusty bookshelves of used book stores along with Jalna by Mazo de la Roche practically all of my life. I finally found a decent hardback copy and read it--not with alacrity, but not with dread either. I found it informative of the life and travail of the country doctor in Wales and the struggle of coal miners. The persistence of the good doctor against the bigotry found in the strata of almost any profession, but especially ...more
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Archibald Joseph Cronin was a Scottish novelist, dramatist, and non-fiction writer who was one of the most renowned storytellers of the twentieth century. His best-known works are The Citadel and The Keys of the Kingdom, both of which were made into Oscar-nominated films. He also created the Dr. Finlay character, the hero of a series of stories that served as the basis for the long-running BBC tel ...more
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“If we go on trying to make out that everything’s wrong outside the profession and everything is right within, it means the death of scientific progress.” 0 likes
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