Denton Welch was crippled in a bicycle accident when he was 19. This book recounts his experience of the accident and his long, slow struggle to recover. Although presented as fiction,all of Welch's work is closely autobiographical (although the names are changed). The opening of the book, which depicts the horror of serious injury, is unforgettable. The catheters, the sequence of operations, the excruciating pain and the loneliness of his convalesence, everything is described with almost uncanny accuracy. The later sections of the book, which are concerned with his slow- and partial- recovery are perhaps less succesful, and the reader's mind wanders. Here, he describes his relationships with his fellow patients, doctors and the nursing staff, and well as his occassional visitors (his mother was dead, and his father in China). A Voice Through A Cloud is undoubtedly Welch's darkest book- he wrote it as his condition once again was deterioating- and in the eyes of some, it is his masterpiece. Personally, I enjoyed his Journals more, and perhaps also Maiden Voyage, his first book. However, he is an under-rated writer, and I hope it will not be long before all his books are once again in print- this is the least he deserves.