When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi


"In the end it cannot be doubted that each of us can see only a part of the picture. The doctor sees one, the patient another, the engineer a third, the economist a fourth, the pearl diver a fifth, the alcoholic a sixth, the cable guy a seventh, the sheep farmer an eighth, the Indian beggar a ninth, the pastor a tenth. Human knowledge is never contained in one person."

Arguably one of the best books of 2016, When Breath Becomes Air is an autobiography by the late neurosurgeon, Paul Kalanithi. After discovering he had terminal cancer, Kalanithi decided to write this memoir, discussing his years as a surgeon, and sharing his wisdom with others.

I don't know why, but so many surgeons seem to be beautiful, poetic writers...and Kalanithi is the perfect example. When Breath Becomes Air almost reads like poetry, engaging your emotions in the science of medicine. Intellectual and eye-opening, very quotable, yet heart-wrenching, this is a book you will want to read over and over again.

When Breath Becomes Air is one of those books that we must all read at least once in our lifetime.


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