Book Review: When breath becomes air by Paul Kalanithi

Mark Twain said, “The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.”

When Breath Becomes Air is a memoir written by a neurosurgeon, writer, husband, and father in the last year of his life. His work is one of great bravery, completed during a fierce battle with terminal lung cancer. While cancer invaded his life as a neurosurgeon, he decided to confront death with words. 

What makes life worth living in the face of death? What do you do when the future, no longer a ladder toward your goals in life, flattens out into a perpetual present? What does it mean to have a child, to nurture a new life as another fades away? These are some of the questions Kalanithi wrestles with in this profoundly moving, exquisitely observed memoir. 

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