“While the entire country has opinions on health care, very few people speak about it with the voice of Theresa Brown in Critical Care. In an honest and comforting tone, Brown showcases the front lines from her new role as a nurse. Vignettes both humorous and humbling fill this book, and the reader is left with an appreciation for the people who truly understand the difference between life and death.”
— Geoffrey B. Jennings, Rainy Day Books, Fairway, KS
“Among all the recent books on medicine, Critical Care stands alone.“ — Pauline Chen, author of Final Exam
“A must read for anyone who wants to understand healthcare. Extraordinary.” — Elizabeth Cohen, MPH, CNN Senior Medical Correspondent
Critical Care is the powerful and absorbing memoir of Theresa Brown—a regular contributor to the New York Times blog “Well”—about her experiences during the first year on the job as an oncology nurse; in the process, Brown sheds brilliant light on issues of mortality and meaning in our lives.
About the Author
Theresa Brown, R.N., lives and works in the Pittsburgh area. She received her B.S.N. from the University of Pittsburgh and, during what she calls her past life, a Ph.D. in English from the University of Chicago. Brown is a regular contributor to the New York Times blog "Well." Her essay "Perhaps Death Is Proud; More Reason to Savor Life" was included in The Best American Science Writing 2009 and The Best American Medical Writing 2009. Critical Care is her first book. She lives with her husband, Arthur Kosowsky, their three children, and their dog.
“Theresa Brown’s arresting account of life on the wards offers palpable testimony that nurses are first responders and primary healers in our times of crises.” — Mehmet Oz, MD, author of YOU: The Owner's Manual health series
“If Theresa Brown tends her patients as well as she tells her story, they are lucky patients indeed. This absorbing dispatch from the front lines of medical care captures the daily travails and triumphs of nursing with humor, compassion, and sometimes terrifying immediacy.” — Julie Salamon, author of Hospital and The Devil’s Candy
“Critical Care is a gift from an English-teacher-turned-nurse who writes from a deeply human context about her first year in a hospital oncology ward...A book of stirring stories about how we live, care for the sick and die.” — Richard M. Cohen, author of Blindsided and Strong at the Broken Places
“Brown shows us what it means to be a nurse and helps us understand that nurses need as much intensive care as their patients. Sometimes more!” — Suzanne Gordon, author of Nursing Against the Odds
“A beautifully written account of a nurse’s first year on the wards, a medical memoir that combines lyricism and compassion with searing honesty and well-timed laugh-out-loud wit...I loved this book.” — Pauline Chen, author of Final Exam
“A must read for anyone who wants to understand healthcare. This extraordinary book will open your eyes to the reality of nursing. If you or your loved one ends up in the hospital, you’ll wish you had someone like Nurse Brown at your side.” — Elizabeth Cohen, MPH, CNN Senior Medical Correspondent