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Customer Review

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gritty, Uplifting, and Informative Tale Of A Doctor At An Inner City Hospital, February 12, 2013
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This review is from: Living and Dying in Brick City: An E.R. Doctor Returns Home (Hardcover)
"Living and Dying in Brick City" is an eye-opening book by Dr. Sampson Davis, previously best known for co-writing "The Pact." In "The Pact," Dr. Davis described the bond that he made with two other kids with whom he grew up in the inner city. They decided that they would all rise out of their difficult surroundings and become physicians, and all three have lived up to that promise. In "Living and Dying" Dr. Davis returns back home to Newark as an Emergency Room attending physician, where he works in Beth Israel Hospital, a tough inner city hospital that sees its share of drama and tragedies. He tells the gritty and affecting stories of many of his memorable patients. Their stories are at times uplifting and at times sad reminders of how our society sometimes fails its least fortunate.

One fascinating story involved a young man who arrived in the ER with critical gunshot wounds. He was transported to the ICU where he died. Dr. Davis recognized his name on the patient list as a kid who accompanied him when they committed an armed robbery at the age of 17. Unlike Dr. Davis, who went on to success as a physician, this young man went in a completely different direction. It's stories like these that make one realize the small forks in the road that can determine our lives.

Unlike most other medical memoirs, this book also gives practical advice to people who are trapped in the difficult situations of many of the patients in his stories. It's a wake-up call for people to learn about the difficulties and failings of health care in major urban settings. I really enjoyed it.

This book is the latest in what I consider a recent renaissance of medical memoirs.
Twelve Patients by Dr. Eric Manheimer tells the stories of patients at the famed Bellevue Hospital, written by the former medical director there. The author pulls no punches in describing these affecting and often unusual patients in sometimes terrifying detail. Very recommended.
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