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The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of…
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The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer (2010)

by Siddhartha Mukherjee

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1,797None3,881 (4.33)1 / 177
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Showing 1-5 of 86 (next | show all)
This was a bit of a tough read, not because it was badly written or written in a highly scientific manner obscuring the discussion with wodges of data, but because it stirred up a lot of my issues with cancer and my relationship with it. People who know me know I had cancer, Hodgkin's Lymphoma to be exact and I survived chemotherapy, to see the drugs mentioned, their sources, the fact that people have been treated successfully for this cancer since 1969 came as a bit of a surprise. Seeing the path to the multiple-drug treatment that I went through (AVBD if you want to know) being developed struck me deeply and made me a little twitchy and I had to read several light fiction titles to distract me.

It's an interesting read, the history of cancer, some possible historical examples, some of the personalities involved, particularly from the US, some of the links on the chain that are being discovered and some of the treatments attempted over the years.

I found it compelling, interspersed with tales of his own work and experiences in Oncology, he's familiar with the topic, and does do a sucessful job (in my opinion) of creating a biography of the multifaceted monster that is cancer.

Worth a read. ( )
  wyvernfriend | Apr 10, 2014 |
medicine
  coolmama | Apr 8, 2014 |
Absolutely brilliant. ( )
  alienhard | Mar 26, 2014 |
READ IN DUTCH

I had been willing to read The Emperor of All Maladies for quite some time, but never got to it before.

At University I follow classes from Biomedical Sciences, so I found it really interesting to read about this. The book is not only about cancer, but mostly about all the different ways scientists en doctors have tried to defeat cancer. Many ways to so have (unfortunately) failed, but it also shows that through more and more research we are coming closer to a better solution.

Personally I liked to see so many things I've heard in college be mentioned in this book. ( )
  Floratina | Jan 23, 2014 |
Phenomenal. Hopeful. ( )
  MelissaZD | Jan 1, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 86 (next | show all)
It's time to welcome a new star in the constellation of great doctor-writers. With this fat, enthralling, juicy, scholarly, wonderfully written history of cancer, Siddhartha Mukherjee - a cancer physician and researcher at Columbia University - vaults into that exalted company ...
 
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Epigraph
Illness is the night-side of life, a more onerous citizenship. Everyone who is born holds dual citizenship, in the kingdom of the well and the kingdom of the sick. Although we all prefer to use only the good passport, sooner or later each of us is obliged, at least for a spell. to identify ourselves as citizens of that other place. --Susan Sontag
Dedication
To Robert Sandler (1945-1948), and to those who came before and after him.
First words
(Prologue) On the morning of May 19, 2004, Carla Reed, a thirty-year-old kindergarten teacher from Ipswich, Massachusets, a mother of three young children, woke up in bed with a headache.
In a damp fourteen-by-twenty-foot laboratory in Boston on a December morning in 1947, a man named Sidney Farber waited impatiently for the arrival of a parcel from New York.
Quotations
In solving a problem of this sort, the grand thing is to be able to reason backwards. That is a very useful accomplishment, and a very easy one, but people do not practice it much.- Sherlock Holmes, in Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's A Study in Scarlet
Physicians of the utmost fame Were called at once; but when they came They answered, as they took their Fees, "There is no Cure for this Disease." - Hilaire Belloc
Its palliation is a daily task, its cure a fervent hope. - William Castle, describing leukemia in 1950
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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A magnificently written "biography" of cancer--from its origins to the epic battle to cure, control, and conquer it.

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