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The Children's Hospital [Hardcover]

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Item description for The Children's Hospital by Chris Adrian...

Surviving in a floating hospital after the earth is flooded beneath seven miles of water, medical student Jemma Claflin finds herself possessed of strange powers that lead to an understanding of her frightening destiny.

Publishers Description
A hospital is preserved, afloat, after the Earth is flooded beneath seven miles of water. Inside, fluenode1 fluenode1 assailed by mysterious forces, doctors and patients are left to remember the world fluenode1 they've lost fluenode1 and to imagine the one to come. At the center, a medical student named fluenode1 Jemma Claflin finds fluenode1 herself gifted with strange powers and at the beginning of a fluenode1 frightening destiny. Simultaneously fluenode1 epic, intimate, and wildly imaginative, The fluenode1 Children's Hospital is a work of stunning fluenode1 scope, mesmerizing detail, and fluenode1 wrenching emotion.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   615
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 1.5" Width: 6.25" Height: 9.25"
Weight:   2.15 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Aug 22, 2006
Publisher   McSweeney's
ISBN  1932416609  
ISBN13  9781932416602  

Availability  0 units.

More About Chris Adrian

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Chris Adrian is the author of Gob's Grief, The Children's Hospital, and A Better Angel. Selected by The New Yorker as one of their "20 Under 40," he lives in San Francisco, where he is a fellow in pediatric hematology-oncology.

Chris Adrian was born in 1970.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > General > Contemporary
2Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > General > Literary
3Books > Subjects > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > Contemporary
4Books > Subjects > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > General
5Books > Subjects > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Science Fiction > General

Reviews - What do customers think about The Children's Hospital?

imaginative and compelling  Sep 18, 2008
I really liked this book! It was so intreaging, and really captures big imaginations like mine. I had dreams that definately were rooted in me reading before bedtime. I am not religious, but found the religious themes interesting, especially with todays society leaning so much towards secular views. The end was sortof sad, but very appropriate. I couldnt imagine it ending any other way. (It was sortof trippy) You will need some time to reflect after reading it. I could see how some people might not like it, but if you have a gigantic imagination and loved incredible stories, read this book.
Whose Hospital is it anyway?  Aug 30, 2008
I'm finally getting around reading this book for the second time, after thinking about it for over a year (this book won't let you off the hook once it gets into your head).

This time around, I think I'll keep the book's title in mind. The frustration from the characters within the book as well as from readers of it seems to be related to us all thinking that the hospital is there for the medical staff rather than the patients. Once you can accept that is not the case, the book has an incredibly happy ending...

I believe that partially, this book is about us, our medical system, and our society. But eventually, this book deals, like all truly great books, with you and me alone.

Don't pick at that bit of dry skin...
Get an editor! Please!!!  Aug 27, 2008
First, let me say that I think Chris Adrian is a very good writer. Now he just needs to find a very good editor, because this behemoth of a book could easily have been cut by a third with no appreciable difference made to the story line. Lotta flab here. As I said, the writing itself was good, and I must say I agree with him completely about the devastating effect of talking babies in advertising and popular culture, by by God, I did not need over SIX HUNDRED pages of Jemma's fears and daydreams.

The ending was well done, but the 550 page setup was completely unnecessary, in my opinion. He's got a book of short stories coming out soon (The Better Angel) and I am looking forward to giving that a try.
The Book of Jemma  Aug 2, 2008
Perserved in a hospital, 1130 people survive the apocalypse in this epic, ambitious, beautiful, and devestating novel. This is the kind of book you immerse yourself into, pulling you down through all seven miles of water, stranding you alone in one huge building. At times it can be suffocating, at other exhilerating. There are some scenes that literally took my breath away (a massive healing through the hospital). At other times, the pages can't fly about fast enough (a boy's diary; an exploration off the hospial). And the end is so devestating and heartwrenching that you pain even for the least of characters.

All of this is blended together exceedingly well by Chris Adrian, who, it felt, made these promises, these glimpses of spectacle, in his previous novel (and a central character from that makes another central appearence here), and delivered far and beyond anything from that previous book. He can make the fantastic elements seem not at all fantastic or the real elements so bizarre you cannot believe them, and frequently mixes the fantastic and real and believability without a second thought. He's like John Crowley in his delicated handling of the fantastic, making it completley necessary for the entire story. He's like Gabriel Garcia Marquez in his ability to merge it all together (as well as utilitze long, harrowing paragraphs and passages). His characters are almost well-rounded and fully developed, though some of them start becoming more of thier destinies than their personas, but by the time that happens, the novel is so captivating that it doesn't really matter; it's like you know what you need to know about these people and their reactions and mistakes and flaws all come out in a display of flashing green light.

The book is both the most optimistic view of the Apocalyspe and the most devestating (it can be divided in halves, Thing One and Thing Two): it never quite reaches the brutality of Cormac's "The Road" or the chaos of Cuaron's "Children of Men" or the animosity of Miller's "Mad Max", and the book doesn't really need to and, concerning the subject matter, it probably wouldn't work if it did. Adrian isn't afraid to relieve the tension as he delves into dark subjects of religion, theology, death, salvation, and hope and there are plenty of scenes where you go, "Well, living in the hospital wouldn't be that bad." There's a tamale lady and a man with 8 wives; there's the most vulgar terms directed at angels that it can be nothing less than hilarious; there's ineffective people. At the same time, there's some of the saddest individulas you'd ever meet. Told through about four different voices of four different supernatural beings who collapse and build on themselves whenever they feel, Adrian somehow remains in complete and total control of the work and it shows.

Though long, clocking in at 615 pages, the book is completley worth it; it may even be the best book McSweeney's ever put out. Breathtaking and beautiful, devestating and moving, "The Children's Hospital" is a marvel.
I wish I had read something else.  Jul 23, 2008
Given the length and effort put into this book I would have expected an ending that was in some way satisfying. And, having stuck through to the end, I felt robbed of my time and enthusiasm; this could have been a very engaging short story.

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