Book 4 of 2017: ‘When Breath Becomes Air’ by Paul Kalanithi


I’ve been a bit nervous about reading this book, because my Grandpa died of lung cancer a couple of months ago, so I was worried that it would strike fairly close to home (which it did, obviously). However, I picked it up on Wednesday night on a whim. I’d wanted to read since I saw it in Waterstones in the middle of last year and I was feeling fairly restless, and the time felt right to open it up.

I’m writing this, but honestly, I don’t have a lot to say. It was brilliant. Probably in the top 10 of books I’ve ever read. It doesn’t feel totally finished, but it’s beautifully written. It encapsulates how I feel about death really well. His treatment of people and life are incredibly inspirational. When I got to the end, I truly felt like I valued life a little more, was able to see the magic a little more, and I think that’ll stay with me for a long time. It genuinely shifted my perspective slightly, or reminded me of where I want it to be, and honestly, I don’t think a book can do more. Heart-wrenching the whole way through, but phenomenal.