The Blood of Strangers: True Stories from the Emergency Room

Frank Huyler

A haunting and exquisitely-observed collection of medical vignettes that brilliantly captures the intense drama of the Emergency Room

Reminiscent of Chekhov’s stories, The Blood of Strangers is a visceral portrayal of a physician’s encounters with the highly charged world of an emergency room. In this collection of spare elegant stories, Dr Frank Huyler reveals a side of medicine – the intricacy of suturing a facial wound, the bath a patient receives from her husband and daughter – interwoven with the lives of the sick and injured. The author presents an array of fascinating characters, both patients and doctors – a neurosurgeon who practices witchcraft, a trauma surgeon who unexpectedly commits suicide, a wounded murderer, a man chased across the New Mexico desert by a heat-seaking missile. At times surreal, at times lyrical, at times brutal and terrifying, The Blood of Strangers is a deeply affecting first book from one of the most dramatic specialities of modern medicine.

Reviews of The Blood of Strangers: True Stories from the Emergency Room

    • ‘Unforgettable.’Sunday Times
    • ‘Set to become a classic.’Independent
    • ‘A breathtakingly brilliant portrait, sketched so elegantly that if it were done in pencil it would only consist of a few sharp lines.’The Times
    • ‘One of the best writers to emerge since the death of Raymond Carver. He moves medicine out of the realm of science and into the domain of humanity.’Red
    • ‘Dr Huyler’s short, intense book treats of only the most important matters: life and death. This is a young writer with a big mind – and an even bigger heart.’Paul Auster‘If Raymond Carver had been a doctor, these are the stories he would have written. There are no untarnished heroes here. This is the world as it is: lovely and disturbing all at once.’Atul Gawande, New Yorker