Why this book?
Mary Roach is a woman after my own heart.
Grimly fascinated and unflinching without crossing the line into disrespect. Her very personal introduction, discussing how a cadaver is just that, no longer a person, and how she realised this when inadvertently made to spend time with her mother's body, sets her up as the perfect person to discuss bodies with humour, warmth, and interest.
The opening chapter about the medical use for decapitated heads sets the tone from the off, and the book made me finally get around to donating my body to medical science so that I too could go on a strange and useful to humanity adventure post-mortem.
Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers
Why should I read it?
5 authors picked Stiff as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.
What is this book about?
For two thousand years, cadavers - some willingly, some unwittingly - have been involved in science's boldest strides and weirdest undertakings. They've tested France's first guillotines, ridden the NASA Space Shuttle, been crucified in a Parisian laboratory to test the authenticity of the Shroud of Turin, and helped solve the mystery of TWA Flight 800. For every new surgical procedure, from heart transplants to gender confirmation surgery, cadavers have helped make history in their quiet way. "Delightful-though never disrespectful" (Les Simpson, Time Out New York), Stiff investigates the strange lives of our bodies postmortem and answers the question: What should…