Enjoyed this book immensely. All 534 pages of it. It was definitely a commitment--a relaxing sort of commitment, like committing to a mini-series with a cozy fire and a bowl of popcorn. One of my favorite quotes in the book (and there were more than a few):
"Call me old-fashioned, but I've always believed that hard work pays off."
Thomas Stone is a surgeon working in an Ethiopian Mission Hospital. The story weaves through two generations and a likeable cast of characters who live and work there in times of peace and in times of civil unrest.
"Life: You live it forward but understand it backward."
This is a fitting quote that defines the plot of the story, as it unfolds.
I was fascinated by the medical aspect of this book. Borrowing from a book review by Mark Salzman, "This book has everything: nuns, conjoined twins, civil war and medicine. If Vikram Seth and Oliver Sacks were to collaborate on a four-hour episode of Grey's Anatomy set in Africa, they could only hope to come up with something this moving and entertaining."
I felt the author's love for his characters. Especially the ones we might find distasteful if we were to encounter them in our life's path. My take away:
"Make something beautiful of your life."
It was marvelous.