Okay. So this review is a littttle overdue. That's all on me, because reasons. I will go into that in a later post. So, without further delay, I shall start my review!
When I read the synopsis for this book, I was immediately sold. John Mutter, a doctor in late 1800s Philadelphia, became famous for operating on unusual monstrosities. These people were shunned by other doctors, who would refuse to operate on them. Naturally, this came to mind:
Dr. Mutter was known for his flamboyant personality and style. His lectures were very popular at the medical college because he would engage the students during his discussions and not show off in a belittling way as other lecturers would. He was either well-liked or shunned by the medical community because of his radical way of approaching surgery. People from all walks of life would come to him because he would help them regardless of their ailment (other doctors would turn them away as they were considered "freaks"). He performed surgeries on people who had been burned so badly that their skin had fused their their head to the shoulder by cutting flaps of skin and recreating the shape of the face and neck. This would and will be known as the Mutter Flap; making Mutter one of the pioneers of reconstructive surgery.
From Mutter's rich childhood plagued with death to his ground-breaking work, Aptowicz puts the facts on the page with ease. "Flashbacks" are inserted exactly where they need to be, and only add to the story. Some chapters are shorter than others, but this time around, it works with the book. The writing is laid out, facts are presented, and only what is needed is left behind. It is thoroughly researched to the point where there is no room for doubt. She doesn't try to shove a ton of information all at once in one chapter. All of these factors make it a fast and excellent read.
The cover is beautiful; I know I would've stopped and taken a look had I seen it in a bookstore. I have already recommended this book to several coworkers, and I would definitely recommend it to anyone, even if they're not a non-fiction reader. It's a weekend read, doesn't overload you with information, and gives you a look into a world that you would most likely have not thought to look upon.