About 20 Years ago, Linda Clarke, writer, professional storyteller and bioethics consultant was a neurosurgery patient of a colleague, Michael Cusimano at St. Michael's hospital in Toronto Canada. What was a distant relationship turned into one that was much closer. 10 years ago, Linda and Michael had a dialogue about recounting the story of her surgery and their relationship together. Linda became the "architect" of their project-- and they became co-authors in 2019 of In Two Voices: A Patient and a Neurosurgeon Tell their Story. The result is a lyrical co-memoir-- at times riveting, at other times sobering of their shared experience. What is probed goes much deeper than the facts, exposing the actors involved, their lives outside of their callings, their upbringing, and, most importantly, their differing interpretations of an important event during the surgery that only came to full light during the writing process. 


This unique contribution to our field not only recounts their shared/interpreted experience, but also is done in a creative and unique narrative style, reflecting the back and forth correspondence between the 2 authors. It should be of value for those focusing on narrative medicine, professionalism, patient experience, doctor-patient relationship-- let alone for those looking for a "good read". We are planning to use it as a "companion" reading for a two month 2nd year block, "Mortal Bodies/Wounded Healers", as part of our Art and Practice of Medicine course. 


Although the title of this work claims two voices, there are both foreword and afterword sections that are worthwhile additions to the book, as well as a section closing the main text, titled "Standing By", written by Linda's husband, James, that adds fresh perspective to the story. 


Pottersfield Press

Place Published

Lawrencetown, Nova Scotia



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