PDA

View Full Version : Looking for two medical short story books


GythaOgg
11-11-2010, 11:18 PM
The recent thread about science books for a bright teen reminded me, in a roundabout way, of two books I am casually searching for.

I don't remember the name of either of them. I would have read them most likely sometime between 1985 and 1995, probably to the earlier end of that. They were both books I had from the library, which is one reason I can't recall the titles.

The first one - a collection of short stories, perhaps real or based in real events, on semi-medical topics. I retain the vague impression the collection was written by a doctor. One story in the collection has haunted me for years - a small town pharmacist who commits suicide by drinking acid. Another story in the collection was about a marble-carving artist whose daughter dies of Hodgkin's disease and he does beautiful carvings for her tomb. The stories were mostly dark and depressing, as I recall. I'd like to look at this one again to see if it really was as depressing as I remember it.

The other was a collection of historical medical detective type stories. I think there was a story about rabies, and another one about a group of vacationers in Scotland who get botulism from sandwiches made for their fishing expedition on a loch. I remember thinking at the time this book was interesting and I'd like a copy, but I lost track of the title.

Any help at all would be much appreciated....especially so many years later!

pinkfreud
11-11-2010, 11:57 PM
Your second book may be Great Medical Disasters, by Richard Gordon, first published in 1983. I know it has the botulism sandwiches.

GythaOgg
11-12-2010, 08:43 AM
Your second book may be Great Medical Disasters, by Richard Gordon, first published in 1983. I know it has the botulism sandwiches.

Thank you, I'll check it out - sounds like the kind of book I'd like even if it's not exactly the one!

Eleanor of Aquitaine
11-13-2010, 12:53 PM
Possibly The Medical Detectives, by Berton Roueche.

GythaOgg
11-13-2010, 03:50 PM
Possibly The Medical Detectives, by Berton Roueche.

No, I own that one and reread it quite often. It's a favorite, and is a good example of the kind of thing I like. Having looked at a bit of the Richard Gordon book mentioned above, I think that's the right one for the book with the mention of the fishing party and the botulism outbreak.

Still no takers on the first book, though. This one really haunts me, particularly that one story. I thought it might be one of Richard Selzer's books, but a quick poke through Amazon didn't turn up any likely candidates from his writings.

Send questions for Cecil Adams to: cecil@straightdope.com

Send comments about this website to: webmaster@straightdope.com

Terms of Use / Privacy Policy

Advertise on the Straight Dope!
(Your direct line to thousands of the smartest, hippest people on the planet, plus a few total dipsticks.)

Copyright 2018 STM Reader, LLC.