Every Second Counts: The Extraordinary Race to Transplant the First Human Heart Paperback – 6 Aug 2007
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'In this thrilling history of heart transplantation, Donald McRae shows how exciting medical history can be ... Few of the heart transplant pioneers were saints (Lillehei was guilty of tax evasion) but in this gripping book, McRae shows how their flaws also drove their remarkable advances' SUNDAY TELEGRAPH 9/7 'In a profession that rewards front, Barnard's cool annexation of this famous first is still a stand-out. His subsequent antics - a couple of 19-year-old wives, a late obsession with anti-ageing treatments that saw him stripped of his membership of the American College of Surgeons - did little for his reputation. McRae has spoken to everyone, and recorded everything, for which he deserves credit. He doesn't judge; but then he doesn't need to. Whatever the backstory, Barnard will always be first' - SUNDAY TIMES 20/8 'It's a thrilling tale and it's told in detail here' Sunday Telegraph 19/8 'McRae paints not only a vivid portrait of the driven and ambitious South African [Dr Christiaan Barnard] but also adeptly explains the medical background to Barnard's triumph' Sunday Times 2/9
About the Author
Donald McRae is the award-winning author of eight books. He is one of only two authors to have won the prestigious William Hill award twice, for Dark Trade and In Black & White. As a journalist he has twice won Sports Interviewer of the Year - as well as winning Sports Feature Writer of the Year. He lives in Hertfordshire.
Top Customer Reviews
This account is a detailed and fascinating insight into those years before the first transplant; a medical world of personalities, ethics and technique. Be warned, it's not for the faint hearted. The detail of individual surgeries is occasionally graphic and not for the squeamish. I know that animals are used for medical research but I couldn't read all the accounts involving the way dogs were used in the name of research.
That aside, I was interested to read about medical teams at different ends of the world racing to be the first. The competitiveness, bitterness, antipathy and celebrity status of those involved was a real eye opener. For the lay person, this aspect of medicine is largely unknown and in some ways, that's probably just as well! I was surprised by some of the egos and the real extent of competition. But, in context, those involved were brave, occasionally foolhardy and it's thanks to their vision and belief that some procedures are now routine.
It's a well researched account with some individuals faring better than others in terms of their achievements and reputation. Donald McRae has created a real sense of pace and race in this fascinating record and I learned a great deal.
We all know who won this race - but I had no idea how little Chris Barnard deserved it!
The book is a "page turner" - a cliched description I know - but true. This is not some dry account of those groundbreaking years of the late 50's and 60's. It is a vivid portrayal of the brilliance of those involved, of their fears and their aspirations, and most interestingly of their personalities.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Great book! Order this before it's too late, every second counts!Published 4 months ago by Jess/Marietta
I've just finished reading this for the second time, and it really continues to fascinate me- it is so well researched, and moves at a good pace, not brooding too much on the... Read morePublished on 30 Nov. 2010 by dcl
a good read for prospective medical students looking for medically related books that aren't really difficult. Read morePublished on 6 Jun. 2010 by Amazon Customer
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