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The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer

Unabridged Audiobook

Written By: Siddhartha Mukherjee

Narrated By: Fred Sanders

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Date: December 2015

Duration: 22 hours 21 minutes


A magnificent, beautifully written "biography" of cancer"from its first documented appearances thousands of years ago through the epic battles to cure, control, and conquer it, to a radical new understanding of its essence. The Emperor of All Maladies reveals the many faces of an iconic, shape-shifting disease that is the defining plague of our generation.

The story of cancer is a story of human ingenuity, resilience, and perseverance, but also of hubris, arrogance, paternalism, and misperception, all leveraged against a disease that, just three decades ago, was thought to be easily vanquished in an all out "war against cancer." Mukherjee recounts centuries of discoveries, setbacks, victories, and deaths, told through the eyes of his predecessors and peers, training their wits against an infinitely resourceful adversary. The book reads like a literary thriller with cancer as the central character.

From the Persian Queen Atossa whose Greek slave may have cut off her diseased breast to the nineteenth-century recipients of primitive radiation and chemotherapy, to Mukherjee's own leukemia patient, Carla, The Emperor of All Maladies is about the people who have soldiered through toxic, bruising, and draining regimens in order to survive"and to increase the store of human knowledge.


  • J Olsen

    Thorough accurate and compelling story of cancer as one of diseases of greatest impact on our personal and collective lives. A rich narrative which brings to light both the personal, institutional and global accomplishments with the victories and losses over cancer getting equal discussion. The author also honors casualties of the ongoing battle and heartbreaking tragedies and the major victory’s. Optimism is overriding that progress has been made but much more progress is to come in the future. Definitely a must read for anyone in medicine, biological science, healthcare or who has been affected by cancer. It seems that cancer plays a major role in our all of our lives whether we like it or not!