Book Review: When Breath Becomes Air

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Paul Kalanithi: A man between Triumphs and Tragedies by Shahid Khan 

Few weeks ago, I came across an extraordinary book titled ‘When Breath Becomes Air’ – a memoir of Dr Paul Kalanithi’s heart- wrenching and moving yet riveting account of his life, love, wisdom, hope and passion for human kind as well as his illustrious journey from being a young brilliant neuro- surgeon/scientist to a decaying patient with lung cancer.

The theme of this book struck me and I read it in two days amid moments of tears and sorrow, pride and praise for this person with whom I felt I have a connection – An inseparable human connection. The book shakes the very being of the reader as it offers a poignant whiff of realism, idealism, and bitter truths of life which we all human beings sooner or later encounter: The fragility of human life against the tick-tock of the clock. It leaves the reader with some optimism about life to pursue dreams but the book also provides an undertone impression of grim realities of life, yet inspiring and mind-blowing in its nature.

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