Patient: The True Story of a Rare Illness Paperback – 1 May 1997
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* A "New York Times" Notable Book of the Year
* A "New York Newsday, Village Voice Literary Supplement, " and "Sunday Times" (UK) Book of the Year
* Finalist for the "Esquire" (UK) Best Nonfiction Award
"Told with great wit and without self-pity, "Patient" is a sobering look at how life can suddenly be transformed." --"New York Times Book Review"
"[A] flawless telling of his unexpected and drawn-out battle with an extremely rare--and nearly fatal--illness." --"New Yorker"
"Watt's spare, delicate prose and natural humility are sweet enough to make this bitter pill of a book go down like candy." --"Entertainment Weekly"
"Funny, frightening, and piercingly vulnerable." --"Interview"
"The reader comes away with an unforgettable understanding of the transformative nature of severe illness. . . . Few have told such a compelling life-story as skillfully." --"San Francisco Chronicle"
"Watt is a sharp observer and a gifted writer. . . . What comes through in this very remarkable story is the author's sense of self and of the order and surprise of life." --"Seattle Times"
"Unlike so many people who've looked death in the eye and lived (long enough) to write about it, Watt doesn't wax philosophical or draw too improbably many lessons from being desperately ill; he just records his own consciousness as it shrinks to the size of his body and his immediate surroundings, which in fact tells us more about what illness means and what it does to us than any sort of positive-minded propaganda." --"Village Voice Literary Supplement"
"Lucid and affecting." --"Time Out"
"Watt writes like a man in a precarious lifeboat keeping his eyes firmly on the life continuing on shore. . . . It's his becoming modesty that allows the book the feel of triumph without ostentation." --"Boston Phoenix"
"At once horrifying and humorous . . . [Watt] proves himself to be a talented and insightful author, his prose enlivenedr --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From the Back Cover
In the summer of 1992, on the eve of an American tour, Ben Watt, one half of British pop duo Everything But The Girl, was taken into a London hospital complaining of chest pain. He didn't leave for two and a half months. Still only twenty-nine, Watt had developed a rare life-threatening disease that initially baffled doctors. He needed two months of hospital treatment and four risky operations to remove dead internal tissue before the condition was stabilized. By the time he was allowed home, his ravaged body was forty-six pounds lighter, and he was missing most of his small intestine. But Patient is more than a diary of Watt's hospital days. As he awakens bewildered and disoriented in a hospital bed between bouts of surgery, Watt injects pathos and humor into his medical nightmare, writing about his childhood and reflecting on his family and on his shared life with bandmember and partner Tracey Thorn. The result is a provocative and affecting memoir about life, illness, and survival. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
Anyway, one sunny day last week, I picked it up and continued to read until I'd finished it. I put it down briefly to carry out necessary things like eating etc but otherwise, it gripped me.
It is so easily and beautifully written - lyrical and heart-wrenching. I truly loved this book. I love *him* - he's a brilliant person. (I didn't really know who he was until I read the book. Though of course, I listened to and loved "I don't wanna talk about it" for years.)
Good on you, Ben.
Your book reads like a funny, sad, thrilling song.
Watt brilliantly depicts the withdrawal into oneself, the retreat into a child like, helpless state that illness brings.The sense of your life on hold as you gain snippets of normality through windows or wheel chair bound excursions through hospital corridors, cafes and grounds.He also expertly captures the associated frustration and the initial deluded belief that there will be a return to the pre-illness normality.
Particularly redolent of my own time in hospital is the sense of feeling special and the guilty enjoyment of attention that illness can bring and its attendant influence over relatives and carers.Watt brilliantly captures the awkwardness of parents lurched back into the role of carers and the differing abilities of family members to deal with your illness.But it is the love of and constancy of his partner, Tracy which is the scaffold to his recovery, something I too can closely relate to.
The invasiveness of medical procedures and the indignity they bring is poignantly described.I too can particularly relate to the personal awkwardness of myself and medical staff when administering chemotherapy,the outrageous banality of it and the lack of privacy when coping with nausea.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Well written, honest and informative, tho I finished the book feeling like I hadn't got to know Ben Watt in any real depth.Published 17 months ago by Brett Dee
Very well written, quite harrowing account of surviving a terrible and very scary illness. Highly recommended read. I have recommended to friends.Published on 26 April 2014 by M. Thomassen
An excellent read. Insightful and humorous in spite of the subject matter. A lovely, touching story of love and strength.Published on 19 Feb. 2014 by moira farrelly
A great start but it developed into another 'hospital' saga. Shame , I thought it would be riveting but I got so bored that I skipped to the end.Published on 5 Feb. 2014 by purpleannie