Thirty-one real-life emergency room dramas—some horrifying, some amusing, some heartrending—told by doctors with a definite flair for storytelling. Editor Sachs, himself an emergency room resident at a Cook County, Ill., hospital, has rounded up an impressive crew of over two dozen writing doctors, among them essayist Richard Selzer; columnist Barry Pollack, who wrote episodes of Trapper John, M.D.; Samuel Shem, pseudonymous author of the very funny novel House of God; and David Felshuh, whose play Ms. Evers Boys was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize. Consequently, this collection's pieces are more consistently well-written than the mixed bag of Mark Brown's recent Emergency! True Tales from the Nation's ERs (1995). Written mostly as first-person narratives, these well-crafted stories often reveal as much about the physician as about the patient. In Selzer's brief story of stitching up a police-inflicted gash in the forehead of a huge drunken black man, the real subject is Selzer's anger—at the man (whose ears he sews to the stretcher to make him lie still), at the police, and finally at himself. One piece called ``Student Doctor'' shows a painfully nervous medical student facing her first patient, an encounter that, happily, both survive. Perhaps the most nightmarish story is one called ``Stump,'' in which the patient is a man who, while trying to commit suicide, succeeded only in blowing his face off. We are never told whether he lived or died, but we know what outcome the emergency room physician hoped for. With the continuing popularity of TV dramas featuring emergency room action, this strong collection of true and memorable tales from the front lines of medicine should find its niche.
Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.
Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").
This early reader is an excellent introduction to the March on Washington in 1963 and the important role in the march played by Martin Luther King Jr. Ruffin gives the book a good, dramatic start: “August 28, 1963. It is a hot summer day in Washington, D.C. More than 250,00 people are pouring into the city.” They have come to protest the treatment of African-Americans here in the US. With stirring original artwork mixed with photographs of the events (and the segregationist policies in the South, such as separate drinking fountains and entrances to public buildings), Ruffin writes of how an end to slavery didn’t mark true equality and that these rights had to be fought for—through marches and sit-ins and words, particularly those of Dr. King, and particularly on that fateful day in Washington. Within a year the Civil Rights Act of 1964 had been passed: “It does not change everything. But it is a beginning.” Lots of visual cues will help new readers through the fairly simple text, but it is the power of the story that will keep them turning the pages. (Easy reader. 6-8)