This book, written in the narrative nonfiction tradition, follows the protagonist as she goes from one patient to the next, prompted by her pager, in the research cancer hospital in which she works. The 32 patients run the gamut from the expected elderly patients receiving death with dignity to newly diagnosed patients in denial. The unexpected comes into play with Gypsies, Native American healers, Jesus-over-the shoulder, and a widow's black-cloud exorcism. All this and their families too!
Rancour has an honest, humane, funny, and poetic style. She sweeps you along with her compassion, her wit, and her unerring ability to see into the truth of the matter. This book is for anyone who has an interest in what goes on in the patient rooms, hallways, stairwells, and elevators of a cancer hospital. You won't be able to put it down.