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Catching Babies Paperback – March 1, 2011
"The Lying Game" by Ruth Ware
From the instant New York Times bestselling author of blockbuster thrillers In a Dark, Dark Wood and The Woman in Cabin 10 comes Ruth Ware’s chilling new novel, The Lying Game. Pre-order today
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Top customer reviews
Kleinke delves into medicine, including complicated births, cancer, hysterectomies, psychosis, as well as clinical research and what it takes to run the hospital as a business, although the latter two topics do not receive the same amount of treatment as the first.
The obstetrical cases were very interesting, but the characters are one-sided (an anorexic attending physician, one with a horrible childhood, an African-American lesbian, a pro-choice Catholic, a Jewish OB who wishes she were a midwife, etc.), and their relationships are a little shallow. They all spend a lot of time crying or not being able to sleep without any sort of redemption or even resolution by the end of the book. The setting is completely nonexistent and generic, beyond some large city on the east coast.
For greater complexity of character and plot as well as interesting obstetrics, I would recommend Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese. If it's a fictional indictment of midwifery that is interesting to you, Chris Bohjalian's Midwives (Oprah's Book Club) may suffice...although his books are somewhat formulaic.
Considering that the author is not a physician, the complexity of the medical matters is rendered quite well. The Spanish translations in italics and some abbreviations ("gyn-onk", not gyn-onc? "here, here," not hear, hear?) are pretty far off. His skill as a novelist is average only, but the mélange of issues and characters works well if taken as a treatise on OBG in our day and age.
Not for the pregnant patient and not, I would think, for med students or residents. Quite soap-opera-ish, but smart in its way.
This review was from galleys.
While Kleinke's two previous, well-regarded books dealt with the challenges of the organization and structure of our healthcare system, here he uses fiction to draw our focus to the humanity and complexity of the patients and physicians involved in the emotionally charged and life-altering events of childbirth which, Kleinke notes, has historically always been the most high-risk event in a woman's life.
Kleinke's prose is tight and lyrical. His writing shows a finely tuned sense of timing and the ability to turn a phrase. These characters are well drawn and woven into the fast-paced plot. His effective use of both detail and perspective brings a heightened sense of reality to the medical narrative, while his allegorical musings force the reader to confront the heart-wrenching decisions that many women and their caregivers face in the challenging process of bringing new life to life. Kleinke enagages his readers to consider not only medical dimensions of these people and events but also their personal, ethical, moral, and spiritual dimensions.
A great read, you won't be disappointed.