Fragile Lives

Fragile Lives A Heart Surgeon's Stories of Life and Death on the Operating Table

Paperback (11 Jan 2018) | English

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Synopsis

SHORTLISTED FOR THE COSTA BIOGRAPHY PRIZE

THE SUNDAY TIMES NO.2 BESTSELLER

WINNER OF THE BMA PRESIDENT'S AWARD 2017

An incredible memoir from one of the world's most eminent heart surgeons, recalling some of the most remarkable and poignant cases he's worked on.

Grim Reaper sits on the heart surgeon's shoulder. A slip of the hand and life ebbs away.

The balance between life and death is so delicate, and the heart surgeon walks that rope between the two. In the operating room there is no time for doubt. It is flesh, blood, rib-retractors and pumping the vital organ with your bare hand to squeeze the life back into it. An off-day can have dire consequences - this job has a steep learning curve, and the cost is measured in human life. Cardiac surgery is not for the faint of heart.

Professor Stephen Westaby took chances and pushed the boundaries of heart surgery. He saved hundreds of lives over the course of a thirty-five year career and now, in his astounding memoir, Westaby details some of his most remarkable and poignant cases - such as the baby who had suffered multiple heart attacks by six months old, a woman who lived the nightmare of locked-in syndrome, and a man whose life was powered by a battery for eight years.

A powerful, important and incredibly moving book, Fragile Lives offers an exceptional insight into the exhilarating and sometimes tragic world of heart surgery, and how it feels to hold someone's life in your hands.

About the Publisher

HarperCollinsPublishers

HarperCollinsPublishers

With a heritage stretching back nearly 200 years, HarperCollins is one of the world's foremost English-language publishers, offering the best quality content right across the spectrum, from cutting-edge contemporary fiction to digital hymnbooks and pretty much everything in between. In the UK, the Glasgow-based William Collins & Sons was founded in 1819 and published a range of bibles, atlases and dictionaries, later including classic authors HG Wells, Agatha Christie, JRR Tolkien and CS Lewis. The original Harper Brothers Company was established in New York City in 1817 and over the years published the works of Mark Twain, the Bronte Sisters, Thackeray, Dickens, John F Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr. In 1987, Harper & Row, as it had then become, was acquired by News Corporation. The worldwide group was formed following News Corp's 1990 acquisition of William Collins & Sons. Today we publish some of the world's foremost authors, from Nobel prize-winners to worldwide bestsellers recent successes including the Booker-winning Wolf Hall and Bring Up The Bodies by Hilary Mantel, and George RR Martin's blockbusting A Song of Ice and Fire series.

Book information

ISBN: 9780008196783
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Imprint: HarperCollinsPublishers
Pub date:
DEWEY: 617.412092
DEWEY edition: 23
Language: English
Number of pages: xi, 340
Weight: 254g
Height: 198mm
Width: 129mm
Spine width: 26mm