Bookclub-in-a-Box Discusses Abraham Verghese's novel, Cutting for Stone by Marilyn Herbert
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Cutting For Stone is very simply one of the best books ever written and read. The narrative begins in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, when twin boys, Shiva and Marion, are born to a nun (who dies) and a surgeon (who runs away). The babies, conjoined at the head, are successfully separated immediately after birth. Despite their ominous beginning, they are raised by two Indian doctors and have a relatively peaceful childhood within the environment of a mission hospital, nicknamed Missing. Their loving community consists of Matron (head of the hospital), Almaz and Rosina (two servants), Rosina's daughter, Genet (born shortly after the boys), and a host of other wonderful and memorable characters. The original conjoinment and separation of the boys becomes the operating theme of the novel and we are given situation after situation in which to consider the concepts of fusion and partition. One day, political troubles with neighboring Eritrea erupt, and one twin, Marion, is forced to escape to America. Thus begins the second half of the novel, a literary doppelganger. The plot is complex, fast-paced, and emotionally moving. Bookclub-in-a-Box looks at all that Verghese provides: history (Ethiopia and Eritrea), medicine (blood and liver disease), psychology (the search for identity), sociology (human relationships) and philosophy (of both science and religion). The narrative's real facts and descriptions are especially interesting for their thematic implications. Every Bookclub-in-a-Box printed discussion guide includes complete coverage of the themes and symbols, writing style and interesting background information on the novel and the author.

About Marilyn Herbert

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Marilyn Herbert, the creator of Bookclub-in-a-Box, located in Toronto, Canada, is an international speaker and writer. As a former teacher and school librarian, she adapts her education skills to the effective and thought-provoking consideration of literary fiction and film. Bookclub-in-a-Box has over fifty published guides for contemporary novels. The company was established in 2002 and has an international customer base and subscriber list. Our discussion guides offer an interactive, yet educational, platform for interpreting and enjoying modern fiction. They are ideal for use by book club members, teachers, students and all readers. Samantha Bailey, a published author, has more than 15 years of experience writing, editing, and teaching English. She has a Masters in Education, and runs her own freelance writing and editing business called Perfect Pen Communications. Graeme Bayliss is a young writer and avid reader, with an honors bachelor’s degree in English literature from the University of Toronto. In addition to his work at Bookclub-in-a-Box, Graeme is a contributor of fictional and non-fictional prose to several university publications. Laura is the Associate Director of Bookclub-in-a-Box, in charge of research, editing, and marketing — she is the voice behind the Bookclub-in-a-Box blog , Facebook , and Twitter accounts. She has an Honours BA in English & Professional Writing from York University and a diploma in Journalism from Centennial College. She is also a freelance writer for Quill & Quire magazine and a copy editor for Torontoist.
Published February 3, 2011 by Bookclub-in-a-Box. 79 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Non-fiction

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