Among the books I go at BEA a few weeks ago (have I blogged about BEA yet? I haven't, have I? Bad Maria. I'll fix that. Promise) is The Emperor of All Maladies by Siddhartha Mukherjee. Normally, I stay away from nonfiction. With some notable exceptions, I find most of the popular stuff dry and uninteresting. Give me ghosts and bloodshed with my internal turmoils, please and thank you.
But The Emperor of All Maladies really caught my attention at BEA. The book is presented as a narrative of the history of cancer, with cancer treated as a character and antagonist, not just a disease, an unfortunate side effect of life. Mukherjee gathered the questions about cancer which he's been presented with as a doctor and asked as a student, and tried to answer as many as he could in this novel.
The Emperor of All Maladies interested me on two levels. First, there's a history of cancer in my family - two grandparents were claimed by it - , and judging from the pitch the editor gave a the BEA panel, this book may have some of the answers to questions I was too young to ask when my grandparents died. Second, it has history. I love history. I love history so much, I plan on being a history major. History is awesome and the only form on nonfiction you can give me with a guarantee that at some point I will read it. Also, history.
I have no clue when I'll get around to reading this - sooooo many books from BEA to read - but my interest in it will boost it higher in the pile after I finish Juliet*.
*Yes I'm still reading Juliet no my mom won't give it back she hides it when she's not reading it and THIS IS WHY I CAN'T BRING NICE THINGS HOME
- Maria D'Isidoro
- was sold to gypsies as a small child for half a tank of gas and a kitten. She was quickly, if not easily, retrieved by her mother after the kitten was revealed to be an Eldrich horror looking for a ride into the nearest metropolitan area to begin wreaking havoc. It's been a bone of contention between Maria and her family ever since, whether the Horror-kitten would've been more or less trouble than she grew up to be.