How does it feel to hold someone's life in your hands? What is it like to cut into someone else's body? What is it like to stand by, powerless, while someone dies because of the incompetence of your seniors? How do you tell a beautiful young man who seems perfectly fit that he has only a few days left to live?
Gabriel Weston worked in the big-city hospitals of the 21st century; a woman in a place dominated by Alpha males. Her world was one of disease, suffering and extraordinary pressure where a certain moral ambiguity and clinical detachment were necessary tools for survival. Startling and honest, her account combines a fierce sense of human dignity with compassion and insight, illuminating scenes of life and death the rest of us rarely glimpse.
"Hard to imagine a better book, or a more original one.... [Weston] writes at least as well as many good novelists...funny, and honest, and beautifully done." (Claire Tomalin )
"A valuable and unflinching account, for all its gruesomeness, since it so clearly tells us the truth." (Sunday Times)
"Direct Red is Gabriel Weston's memoir of the years she spent pursuing a surgical career.... She examines these with an honesty that is both brave and uncomfortable." (Guardian)
"Her wisdom, empathy, morality and self-awareness are very revealing.... Her writing is as incisive, precise and clean as keyhole surgery." (The Times)
"Anyone remotely interested in medicine should read this book...bringing us a front-line report from an often alien territory." (Daily Telegraph)
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