Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese

Book Review: 4 Treasure Boxes
Publisher: Random House Audio (February 3, 2009), Audible Audio Edition, Listening Length: 23 hour(s) and 58 min. (667 pages), ASIN: B001RMWBFC

WOW!! An engrossing story centering on love and redemption.  Twin brothers, Marion and Shiva Stone are born in 1952 at a small missionary hospital in Ethiopia. Initially, conjoined, their birth resulted from the unlikely union of an Indian nun and a talented but aloof British Doctor.   This is a 360° view of their life as shown through the eyes of one of the twins.

Cutting for Stone is a wonderful first novel written by Abraham Verghese. He is a medical doctor, with Indian parents and he was raised in Ethiopia near Addis Ababa. It is told in the first person narrative with the voice of Marion, and sometimes it takes on a third person narrative when Marion is telling his mother or father’s story.

The setting is primarily in Ethiopia and we experience the turmoil that was going on in that country.  We also get a hint of what life was like there including a glimpse of the Ethiopian people. This is a beautiful story; painted with vivid and stunning word pictures. Mr. Verghese medical background adds an interesting dimension to this narration as Marion’s character develops as a Doctor.  He weaves together an incredible tale with phenomenal character development. The story swung full circle and although sombre it was still satisfying.

I highly recommend this novel. It has all, it made me laugh, it made me cry.  Although the ending was surprising and somewhat sad, it was still great.

My Favourite Quote from the book: “Wasn’t that the definition of home? Not where you’re from, but where you’re wanted.”

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