Reviews

  • Gruesomely compelling ... A fascinating account

    Daily Mail
  • Gloriously pulsating ... [Fitzharris] has an eye for morbid detail, visceral imagery and comic potential. From out of this hellish vision, Lister emerges as the cool, modern, scientific saviour to whom we should all give thanks

    Guardian
  • Atmospheric ... The Butchering Art has its share of resplendent gore

    New York Times
  • Thoroughly enjoyable ... With The Butchering Art, Fitzharris explores the intersection of Lister's life, the development of antiseptic surgery, and the horrors of the wards with an almost surgical precision

    Observer
  • The Butchering Art is a formidable achievement - a rousing take told with brio, featuring a real-life hero worthy of the ages and jolts of Victorian horror to rival the most lurid moments of Wilkie Collins

    Wall Street Journal
  • Brilliant ... Thanks to Lister's dogged pursuit of knowledge and fervent attention to the needs of surgical patients, death rates plummeted. Fitzharris tells this story with an equal attention to detail

    Telegraph
  • Scintillating and shocking ... A book full of gangrene, pus and hideous pain, which will make you thankful never to suffer the horror of having a tumour removed from your jaw with no pain relief

    Sunday Times
  • Hugely entertaining and informative ... Fitzharris brings [Joseph Lister's] sensibility to life with great energy and elegance, and her account is vivid and entertaining, as well as enjoyably (and sometimes eye-wateringly) graphic. The result is rich with anecdote and intellectual excitement, replete with emotional resonance and narrative pleasure

    National
  • An illuminating and grisly look at the work of hacksaw-wielding surgeons of the 19th century

    Guardian
  • Well researched and written with verve... A fine read full of vivid detail, prompting thoughtful reflection on the past, and the challenging future, of surgical practice

    Nature