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on March 13, 2015
I really enjoyed this book. I am a medical student, and I first heard an excerpt of "Body of Work" read aloud at my own school's vigil for the bodies donated to us. I got all tearful in the auditorium and almost immediately went home to buy the book on Amazon. I was one of those who had a fair amount of emotional difficulty during anatomy dissections (and I remember my sister exclaiming "Med students still do that?!?" when I brought it up), and the author managed to put those feelings into words much more poetically than I could have imagined. Read this book if you are curious about the process of human dissection, are dubious about the importance or potential impact of cadaver donation, or are a med student just trying to process the emotional toll of it all.
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on March 9, 2017
I loved this book! I loved how she discussed her anxiety through the semester and also incorporated some history and anatomical trips that she went on.
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on March 23, 2014
i had this book once and i let someone "borrow" the book and of course i never got it back. so when i saw it appear, i knew i had to get it again. the book is so well written with such a beautiful story to be told. it's wonderful how we in the medical field can learn from those great people that donate their bodies to science so that others may learn. and the connection between these two is truly a wonderful story. the dead are treated with kindness and respect while the medical students (are future Dr.s) learn how the body works. a must buy. i purchased it twice and this time it's staying in my hands
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on August 4, 2016
I had to read this book as per the matriculation requirements of my school, and I found it to be compelling. The writing style was crisp so the book flowed, and Dr. Montross's experience is one that is very moving.

My concern is that it may represent a minority, though a significant one, of medical students. These comments are anecdotal though.
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on January 9, 2013
Overall, I do like this book. The parts that I enjoy the most are when the author talks about experience in Med school, what its like to take her first exam, the first time she has to cut on the body, the smell... etc. Sometimes she can get a little too sentimental and emotional, and heads off in a direction that gets a little boring for me- so I just skip those parts until the reading gets good again. I'm doing my post bac in Bio right now, and will be applying for Med School in 2014, and this book was on a recommended reading list for pre-med majors at my school, which is why I gave it a whirl. Definitely not a waste of time, since it's pretty fascinating to hear about how she copes with her first experiences in human gross anatomy.
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on October 20, 2010
I find myself wanting to tell other people about this book. I'm never sure that I explain it well enough to make others want to read it (especially when I start out, "I just finished this book about human dissection and it was amazing!!!"). Really well done. Thought provoking. Intelligent. Human. It did NOT make me want to start cutting open my own cadaver, but it did cause me to think about donating my body to science after my death. I appreciated knowing the history of human dissection. I appreciated knowing how cadavers help future doctors to be better at what they do. I especially appreciated learning one woman's perspective on how it felt to do what she had to do--her respect for the cadaver and, most of all, her emotions surrounding what is, essentially something very taboo (to cut another human's body). Amazing. Do read it yourself.
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on June 20, 2015
This was a very profound experience for someone who has never even thought about human dissection before. The author writes well and weaves together her personal experiences , the philosophical and spiritual issues, and the sometimes lurid history of human dissection. I came away with some understanding of the process of becoming a physician and admiration and respect for the donors.
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on February 22, 2014
This book is Psychological sojourn
for a medical student on her way to being
a psychiatrist.
The author is a compassionate student
who becomes interested not only in the
anatomy of her cadaver in the anatomy lab,
but also the " what could have been" with this person
had she lived.
Mary Roach has followed Christine Montross in authoring
her own books.
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on May 18, 2014
Dr. Montross' prose is thoughtful, deep and poetic. I wish I could have read her book when I went through Anatomy Lab. It would have helped me appreciate the wonderful gift those people who donated their bodies gave us as medical students, and it would have helped me deal with my ambivalent and difficult feelings while doing the dissection. Thank you Dr. Montross.
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on August 24, 2015
Boy, this book took me back to anatomy class experiences in physical therapy school. Would like to do it all over again! Anatomy jump-started my brain and for the first time in my life I was truly in awe! Only God could put it all together so we could take it all apart to learn its mysteries.
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