Monday, December 09, 2013

“Gifted Hands” by Cecil Murphey and Ben Carson – The Biography of a Real Miracle Worker

Gifted Hands” by Cecil Murphey and Ben Carson – Front Cover
Many great doctors and surgeons have come and gone over the past centuries, and it can be argued that today, Ben Carson is the most celebrated neurosurgeon, or at least one of the most revered ones. Basically-speaking, Carson worked miracles day in and day out, saving innumerable lives in the process and even being the pioneer of the surgery used around the world to separate twins who are conjoined at the head.

Gifted Hands is the autobiography of Ben Carson, written by the surgeon himself and Cecil Murphey, a writer who specializes in non-fiction literature. In this biography we learn virtually all there is to about Carson, from his childhood to his current-day activities, taking us through his most memorably and harrowing experiences, both in and outside the operation room.

At the outset, it felt like Gifted Hands was slated to be a rather banal biography about a great man, being more of a collection of information about him, rather than an actual work of writing. However, as I kept getting deeper and deeper into the book, it became rather apparent to me that this is a biography unlike most others out there, perhaps even being unique in its style. Carson’s life story is told with a lot of finesse and detail, touching upon the most important parts and (probably) omitting the ones that bring nothing to the reader. This book doesn’t simply teach us what Carson’s life was like, but rather, it takes us on the journey he traveled to become the man he is today.

Though his personal life is definitely an interesting and thought-provoking read, the truly juicy and interesting part of his biography are his experiences in the operating room and the people they affected. He walks us through some truly amazing and harrowing moments, showcasing just how utterly tiring, nerve-wracking and complex things can get during a surgery. To be frank, some of the stories told here have a better sense of suspense than some thrillers out there, partly because we know that what we are told is real.

All in all, Gifted Hands is a superbly written biography giving us the biggest glimpse we could ask for into the mind and the life of a man who saved innumerable lives and has been working miracles for countless years now. Honestly-speaking, I’m having a hard time imagining someone who won’t appreciate such a book, so I will go out on a limb and recommend it to literally everyone out there who enjoys reading even a little bit.

Ben Carson (September 18, 1951)

Ben Carson

Personal site

Ben Carson is an American neurosurgeon and columnist who has been cited by many as a pioneer when it comes to the surgery used to separate twins conjoined at the head. He was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom and even wrote numerous books, including Take the Risk and The Big Picture.
Cecil Murphey (January 28, 1933)

Cecil Murphey

Personal site

Cecil Murphey (who wrote a number of nonfiction books, including numerous biographies, memoirs and so on and so forth. As one can guess, Murphey wrote many bestsellers, with the most prominent ones being 90 Minutes in Heaven and I Choose to Stay.

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