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review 2018-01-06 02:57
The Woman in Cabin 10
The Woman in Cabin 10 - Helen Ruth Elizabeth Ware

I listened to the audio version of this book and really enjoyed the narrator. I was frustrated with the main character because she seemed odd. If you only read the parts she spoke you would think she was mentally disabled. She stammered all the time and did not seem like the professional journalist she was supposed to be. Sure she was having trouble with anxiety but I don´t believe she would have been sent on this trip. She just didn´t seem capable of her job....or speaking. I did enjoy the book though and definitely recommend the audio book.

 

Lo wakes up one night and realizes something isn´t right.  She isn´t sure what woke her up but her bedroom door is shut and she didn´t shut it.  She opens it and sees a man standing there.  He has a mask on and surgical gloves and in his hands was her purse.  She is paralyzed with fear.  The man suddenly slams the door in her face and smashes the lock, trapping her in her room.  Her face was hit by the door when it was slammed and she is dazed and bleeding.  She can´t call for help since her phone was in her purse.  When she finally gets out she finds the intruder is gone and so is her purse with wallet and ID.  He also took her computer which had her banking into on it.  She puts on a brave face but inside she is traumatized.  She calls to tell her employer why she didn´t come in but she said she was fine for the cruise she was set to go on.  Lo is a travel journalist and excited to finally get a chance to prove herself.  The trip was going okay until she woke up suddenly.  She thought she scream and then she heard a big splash like someone someone falling into the water.  She looks out and thinks she sees a hand below the surface.  She called to report it but the chief of security doesn´t believe her... because no one was missing.  The person who was going to be in cabin 10 cancelled at the last minute.  But Lo talked to a woman that was in there and borrowed a mascara from her.  Now she is sure someone killed her and threw her overboard.  How could she get them to believe her?

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text 2017-12-29 19:41
RIP Sue Grafton

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review 2017-10-10 22:17
Overrated.
The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer - Siddhartha Mukherjee

After reading 'The Gene' (Mukherjee's newest book), I saw that a common thread in many of the reviews for that book said that 'Maladies' was the superior effort. It was one of those books that I planned to read "someday" and it took years to buy it and then a few more years to finally get around to reading it. Sometimes it felt like years getting though the book, unfortunately. 

 

Mukherjee looks at the history of cancer: its origins, its place in history, the different ways people have tried to treat it, the advances, the frustrations, etc. It's an epic look at the people who have diagnosed it, treated it, worked on it, suffered from it. Other than the basics of cancer and bits and pieces elsewhere I can't say I knew much that Mukherjee covers.

 

Unfortunately the book suffers for it. It is far too long and covers too much. Initially it reminded me of 'Neurotribes' in its approach but like 'The Gene' (although TG suffers a lot more from this), the book really needed a better editor. As other reviews note, it's like Mukherjee threw everything he found in his research into the book. Sometimes that can be a fantastic approach but depending on the audience it can mean the eyes glaze over and it becomes information overload. There are some great parts and cutting though some of the wordier places made it worth for some of the text. For example, I really wanted to know what happened to Carla (his patient) who pops in and out of the text. Some readers probably didn't care for that (understandable) but I found her story of her diagnosis and treatment interesting and hers was a narrative I wanted to follow.

 

I think there is definitely an audience for this: medical students in general, people who intend to study cancer specifically for school or for their job that is related to the medical field, maybe cancer patients and/or their family members/friends (although that would probably depend on the individual), etc. But as a read for a general audience this was just too much and one of those books that make me wonder who thought this was noteworthy or why it gets so many accolades and awards. 

 

I got this as a bargain book and that was probably best since I kept putting off reading it but wanted to get around to it eventually. I don't think I'll be reading anything else by Mukherjee, though. 

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review 2017-09-21 05:49
Zwei Frauen - Diana Beate Hellmann

This was a reread. The last time I read it was about 20 years ago so it wasn't exactly fresh in my mind but it was surprising how familiar some parts of it were after all these years. 

The story is set in the mid 1970s and is about 18 year old Eva Martin who gives up her family and her childhood to train for her dream of becoming a prima ballerina. Just as she reaches her goal she collapses and is diagnosed with cancer. She shares her room in the clinic with Claudia, a 26 year old loud mouth who has been in and out of remission for years. The young women seem to be opposites in every way but they strike up a friendship that helps them through the trials ahead. 

From the summary of the story the book sounds like sentimental twaddle but in fact it is raw depiction of a cancer patient who is given only months to live. The story is based on experiences in the author's own life and is written as a kind of memoir. I don't know if the book was ever translated into English. 

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