Allyssa Lee
April 18, 2003 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Walk on Water: Inside an Elite Pediatric Surgery Unit

Current Status
In Season
Michael Ruhlman

We gave it an A-

In his compelling look at premier baby-heart surgeon Roger Mee and his Cleveland Clinic staff, Ruhlman deftly parses the hypoplasts and transplants, parents’ hopes and doctors’ egos to depict a neonatal intensive-care unit that is both technically precise and all too human. Written with an intimacy and urgency that rivals any episode of ER, Water sheds precious light on a specialized trade, dizzyingly detailing just how much can go wrong with innocent hearts and the ingenious medical leaps gifted mavericks like Mee have made to mend them. As his assistant sums up, ”Living in this world will change you…. When a friend has a healthy baby, I don’t think it’s normal; I think it’s a f — -ing miracle.” Readers will no doubt feel the same.

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