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Book Review: When Breath Becomes Air
// Crazy Yet Wise

3

“So what tense was I living? Have I proceeded beyond the present tense and into the past perfect? The future tense seems vacant and, on other’s lips, jarring.”

This book broke my heart and shattered it to pieces. My mother died of cancer almost 11 years ago, and I can’t imagine how it was for her to know that she has cancer, the unknown seemed a bit clear, that this fatal illness brings only misery and death even when you become better, it comes back again with lots of pain, misery and DEATH.

Paul Kalanithi is a neurosurgeon, from the book you can feel/know that he was a great man with a great future that he didn’t have, or maybe had half of it or a bit, who knows. The book starts with his life as a residence, then moves to when he became a patient, after that it ends with his wife Lucy talking about his last days and how he died.

The first part was ok. The 2nd part was awful, because we as regular patients, don’t have the full picture of our illnesses even when the doctor tries to explain everything to you. But imagine a doctor finding out that he has cancer and how fatal it is; this was awful. I mean, how he had to deal with it after knowing/seeing his results, that was really bad.

Coming to the end of the book where Lucy his wife ends the book with the last few days of his life spent surrounded by his family and loved ones, describing his death by her own words was really sad and heartbreaking. I cried reading his wife’s words.

I finished this book in just 4 hrs, couldn’t keep it down.

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