An insightful, tender and inspiring memoir that explores the reality of life on the NHS front line.
‘Brilliant, compelling… A hugely life-affirming book’ Mail on Sunday
Grief. Anger. Joy. Fear. Distraction. Disgust. Hope.
All emotions we expect to encounter over our lifetime. But what if this was every day? And what if your ability to manage them was the difference between life and death?
For Aoife Abbey, a doctor in intensive care, these experiences are part of the job – from grief when you make a potentially fatal mistake to joy when the ward unexpectedly breaks into song. Seven Signs of Life is Abbey’s extraordinary account of what it means to be alive and how it feels to care for a living.
‘Sensitive, honest and, yes, brave… Compulsive reading’ Nigella Lawson
‘Heartfelt, honest, illuminating and wise’ Julia Samuel, author of This Too Shall Pass
"A brilliant, compelling account of what it is like to spend your days caring for patients "on the fringe of existence" ... A hugely life-affirming book. In between the many grim situations encountered on a daily basis, Abbey shows us moments of both joy and deep emotional connection"
"A powerful glimpse into the high stakes of intensive care …Above all this book is insightful about the grey areas where a doctor must go ... Some readers may be wearying of doctor memoirs. This one ... has a freshness and a sincerity that moved me. She is a gifted writer ... honest, compassionate, sensitive… [and] the doctor we would crave in our greatest need"
"A thoughtful and necessary book about a world all of us might inhabit at some point in our lives"