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on 27 July 2009
Verghese brilliantly brings to life the Addis Ababa of the 1960s,'70s and '80s,a time of horrific political convulsions that transformed the ancient hidden Christian African empire of Haile Selassie's day into a Stalinist revolutionary hell under Mengistu, and to his regime's final collapse. Yet this is just the background, to a convincing and beautiful saga of passions and of family upheavals and torments, woven well into accounts of how a group of doctors are connected by relationship, rivalry and skills into a collective of dedicated men and women fighting to save life in a poor and war-torn third world country. It held me to the last full stop. Surprisingly, the book has attracted less attention in Britain than in the US. It deserves better from UK readers.
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on 5 March 2016
Although I'm not a medical doctor, I really appreciated the author's love of surgery which permeated the novel, and I appreciated the way he wove medical details into the story. Along with the mainly Ethiopian setting, this made it very different and quite ambitious compared to other novels I have read. Nevertheless, it is very much about family and love, with a large chunk being a coming of age story.
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on 13 March 2017
A wonderful story of Ethiopia at the time of Hailie Selassie. A bit of a tear jerker at the end. It moves from Africa to USA and back. Some medical content.
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on 24 January 2015
I was in the minority at our book club and I gave this up after I'd read about a third. I'm squeamish. There's a lot of what someone called 'medical porn' - overlong accounts of operations. Others in our group were fascinated and gripped by the story.
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on 27 April 2017
Very well written. I felt I was there in the action and knew the characters involved.
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on 8 August 2017
brilliant amazing book..... you will be so glad you read it
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on 23 June 2017
excellent
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on 13 July 2015
GOOD, BUT THE LAST PORTION COULD HAVE BEEN BETTER EDITED
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on 30 August 2017
Brilliant
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on 26 December 2014
one of my favourite books, brilliant. very well written, loved the storylines and the cultural interest of the setting
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