Sunday, March 22, 2009

Cutting for Stone

Ann Marie and I attended an ALOUD event last week at the Central Library.
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We listened to a "conversation" between actor Hector Elizondo and bestselling nonfiction author Abraham Verghese about Verghese's novel Cutting for Stone.
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Verghese's website touts:
A sweeping, emotionally riveting first novel -- an enthralling family saga of Africa and America, doctors and patients, exile and home.

Marion and Shiva Stone are twin brothers born of a secret union between a beautiful Indian nun and a brash British surgeon at a mission hospital in Addis Ababa. Orphaned by their mother's death in childbirth and their father's disappearance, bound together by a preternatural connection and a shared fascination with medicine, the twins come of age as Ethiopia hovers on the brink of revolution.

Yet it will be love, not politics -- their passion for the same woman -- that will tear them apart and force Marion, fresh out of medical school, to flee his homeland. He makes his way to America, finding refuge in his work as an intern at an underfunded, overcrowded New York City hospital. When the past catches up to him -- nearly destroying him -- Marion must entrust his life to the two men he thought he trusted least in the world: the surgeon father who abandoned him and the brother who betrayed him.
I found Verghese rather extraordinary. He is a practicing physician and a professor at the Stanford University School of Medicine, and he still finds time to write. More extraordinary than his medical and literary achievements, however, is his profound sense of humanity. Bedside medicine and the physician-patient relationship are his passion, and many things he discussed at the event really hit me deep inside.

After the conversation, Verghese signed books, including Ann Marie's book.
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We ended the evening with dinner at The Standard a couple blocks away. It wasn't the best meal (which was sad because I rather enjoy brunch and lunch there), and it was annoyingly dark, but I had a blast anyway with Ann Marie.


  1. good company trumps a bad meal any day!

  2. Dang you take some good pictures, WM.

  3. These were with my point-and-shoot!

  4. Fun! Central Library is one of my favorite places in LA. Love the pics.

  5. Any time with Ann Marie is a good time!!

  6. ggaaaaaaahhhhh i love those stairs! i now want to write poignant messages on my front steps.

  7. Wish I were there (for the food) too, glad you both got to spend some time together!

  8. how fun! AM is so cute in that last picture :)

  9. I wish more doctors would care more about bedside manners.

  10. i wish i was related to hector elizondo.

  11. How fun! I love book events. :)


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