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"A medical student's thoughtful and revealing chronicle of growing into the white coat of a doctor . . . told with clarity, candor, and grace."--"Kirkus Reviews"
"Rothman, whose interest in medical ethics led her to medical school, possesses a journalist's eye for detail and makes engrossing reading of even the most mundane tasks associated with medical training. She also lets us follow her romance with a fellow student, adding another dimension to this unflinching look at the healing profession."--"Chicago Tribune"
About the Author
Ellen Lerner Rothman, M.D., lives with her husband, Carlos Lerner, in Brookline, Massachusetts. She is currently doing her residency in the Boston Combined Pediatrics Program at Boston Children's Hospital and Boston City Hospital. This is her first book.
The first few chapters of this book left me wondering how Lerner Rothman ever got the go-ahead to write this book; her writing is distractingly poor. Double adjectives, often redundant, litter her narrative. When she's not over-explaining, she's vague and uses constructions so convoluted I had to read them several times to understand them. But she seems to warm up to the task as she moves through her studies, and I found myself warming up to her. Still, she's so PC, she leaves out a lot--ask anyone who's been to Harvard about the dramatic egotists who call themselves healers there. Also, having worked in hospitals for years, I'd have to say that if she thought watching ER was giving her a taste for the real thing, she's wrong. I can list at least 20 descrepancies between what ER, the tv show and ERs in real life. That doctors and EDs behave as in real life as they do on ER is WISHFUL thinking. Looking forward to Ellen growing up a little, and also hearing about the proving ground of her residency.
This was a realistic, well told account and for the most part I enjoyed reading it. However, it really bothered me that there was an entire chapter about the television show, ER, and a little review blurb from an ER producer on the back cover! This is shameless hype and it doesn't belong in a good book like this. Is there no end to the media hype for ER, a soap opera that's now 99% romance and 1% medicine? That said, this is a good, honest book and I recommend it. Also, Perri Klass's books are wonderful and if you like this kind of book, you shouldn't miss them.
I have been following Dr. Rothman's column "on becoming a doctor," in the Harvard newsletter for the last two years; the book is essentially a collection of those columns, which gives some sense of disjointedness. However, her story is true to what most medical students go through -- ER and pop culture influences high school and college students to go into medicine; her maturation from this viewpoint is clear. Good read and accurate account of med education.
I started reading this book merely to get an account of the life of an American Med-student. <I'm an Irish Med-student>. After five minutes of reading I had an eerie feeling that I had written this book. Lerner manages to eloquently portray every hope, dream, fear and anxiety I as a Med- student have ever experienced. This book is a bible for Med students everywhere and for anyone who has ever wondered about the foreign world of medicine. An amazing read!
This is a great book for someone who is interested in med school and wants to hear about it from someone who just finished. Rothman seems frank about the medical profession and med school. I suggest to anyone with a curiosity in this career to read this book. It easily held my attention, and I look forward to her next book.