Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese

Abraham Verghese

Last night I finished reading Cutting for Stone, and it is a book that will be on my mind for quite awhile. 

With a lot of great literature, there is this common theme. Guitar from Song of Solomon basically sums this theme up: "until you left go of the s@#% that is holding you back, you'll never be able to fly."

I could not wait to get to school to discuss this theme with my seniors and the teacher, whom I thought, told me about this book. 

After two presentations by my seniors, I told them about Cutting for Stone and we talked about the idea of "letting stuff go," and we connected this to the novel Song of Solomon, the play The Piano Lesson, and the short story "Everyday Use." We had such a lively discussion about "letting go." I asked the students to connect this theme to other things that they have read, and we realized that lots of great literature has the theme of taking a figurative or literal journey in order to "let stuff go" in order to fly.

After my class ended, I excitedly ran into the teacher's classroom whom I thought told me about this book, and I said "I just finished reading Cutting for Stone, and it was awesome. She stated: "I didn't tell you about Cutting for Stone, I told you about Half a Yellow Stone. I was so disappointed. I really needed to discuss this book with an adult. I remembered that another teacher told me that he had read it before, and I went to him, and we had a great discussion about this book. (So Thankful that I am in a school with teachers who READ.)

Now, my reader, you and I get to discuss this book. 

This book is about Marion Stone, who is basically telling us about his life. He and his twin brother, Shiva, were born Siamese twins and were separated at birth. Their mom dies giving birth, and their father walks away.

The entire stories takes place in Ethiopia, and Verghese writes about the people of Ethiopia and their doctors and medical treatment with such respect and care. The explanation about diseases and surgeries is enough for the reader to understand but not too much to be confusing.

Ghosh, the man who raised Marion and Shiva, told Marion: "I hope one day you see clearly as I did in Kerchele. The key to your happiness is to own your slippers, own who you are, own how you look, own your family, own the talents you have, and own the ones that you don't."

In this passage, Ghose is referring to a story about a man who had a very old, worn pair of slippers, and he could not stomach the sight of them. But, every attempt that he made to get rid of the slippers ended in disaster. Someone made the suggestion that he'll never be able to escape from them and might as well accept them. The slippers are a symbol for things that we go through in life. Ghosh went on to explain that "in order to get rid of your slippers, you have to admit they are yours, and if you do, they will get rid of themselves."

So, this book deals with Marion figuring out "what were his slippers" so that he could fly.

This was such a thought provoking book that dealt with lots of issues such as letting go, sibling relationships, doctor and patient relationships, absent fathers etc.

I loved this book.....

I really hope you, my reader, is reading some of the books that I suggest.

There are some books that you can read about and there are others that you must read for yourself, and this is one of those books that you must read for yourself.

Soar like an eagle today!!!!

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