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The Marble Corridor and Other Medical Tales -bookcover

By: Grahame C. W. Howard

The Marble Corridor and Other Medical Tales

Pages: 308 Ratings:
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Set within a South London hospital in the 1970s, The Marble Corridor is the first of four stories which chart the progress of a newly-qualified doctor from houseman to consultant. It tracks the multifarious events of a single weekend spent working ‘on-call' and the unremitting pressure creates a sense of tension which permeates this tale. Towards the end of this marathon stretch of duty, sleep deprivation causes the young doctor to hallucinate and he begins to confuse illusion and reality with some strange and incongruous outcomes.

Beyond the Marble Corridor continues to document the author's progress through a series of posts, highlighting some of the ethical and moral issues posed to junior doctors along with the hierarchical structure which had to be managed to progress in hospital medicine. The Ivory Tower, is a humorous interlude as the author spends time in a renowned academic unit while the final part, Pastures New, documents the authors time as a consultant concentrating on a number of aspects of his practice including his work for a charitable institution, examining for one of the Medical Royal Colleges and the tragic story of one particular patient. Here, as in life, humour and tragedy are intertwined.



Dr Grahame Howard was born in London in 1953 and his family moved to Norwich when he was four years old. His childhood, particularly the eccentric behaviour of his father, is documented in his first book, ‘The Tales of Dod', published in 2010. He returned to London to study Medicine at St Thomas' Hospital Medical School, from where he graduated in 1976. Following a series of junior doctor posts in both London and Cambridge he was appointed consultant Clinical Oncologist in Edinburgh in 1986. His subsequent career was spent at the Edinburgh Western General Hospital, specialising in prostate and testicular cancer, eventually becoming Clinical Director of the Edinburgh Cancer Centre, an examiner for the Royal College of Radiologists and assistant editor of Clinical Oncology. ‘Spoz and his Friends' documents the writer's life as a medical student in the 1970s, and relates with humour the faltering transition of these young men from schoolboys to newly-qualified doctors.

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