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November 7, 2014 / Leslie

Dr. Mütter’s Marvels by Cristin O’Keefe Aptowicz

A True Tale of Intrigue and Innovation at the Dawn of Modern Medicine

Dr Mutters MarvelsPublisher: Penguin Audio | September 2014
Format: Audio Download | 9 hours | Rating: 4 stars
Audio Listening Level: Easy – Intermediate

A mesmerizing biography of the brilliant and eccentric medical innovator who revolutionized American surgery and founded the country’s most famous museum of medical oddities.

Imagine living in a time when there were no antibiotics and the slightest infection could kill you; even worse, there was no anesthesia and only the most desperate patients even attempted to have surgery. Compound that with no sterilization of instruments, doctors that didn’t believe they needed to wash their hands, bloodletting and leeches used as a ‘cure’, and you get an idea of the world in which Thomas Mütter practiced medicine.

The author provides an interesting and compelling look at both the history of modern medicine and the life of Thomas Mütter, a pioneer in medical innovation. I was surprised I had not previously heard of Mütter and his many innovations and learned that he is mostly known for the Mütter Museum and its collection of anatomical specimens, medical instruments and medical history.

Audio production:
Narrated by Erik Singer, the book was an easy and entertaining listen. The only downside was that I couldn’t look at the illustrations included in the text as I listened.

For those that prefer the printed word, the book is also available as an enhanced eBook which includes over one hour of audio in which author Cristin O’Keefe Aptowicz shares facts, stories and insights about Dr. Mütter and his contemporaries that she discovered in her research but didn’t make it into the book.

An Under My Apple Tree Rapid Review
Source: Review copy provided by Penguin Audio and Gotham Books.
© 2014 Under My Apple Tree. All rights reserved.
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Leave a Comment
  1. BermudaOnion / Nov 7 2014 7:36 am

    My mom remembers when antibiotics first came out. I bet she’d love this!


  2. Suko / Nov 7 2014 3:35 pm

    Leslie, this sounds intriguing! I’m interested in learning more about Thomas Mütter and the history of modern medicine. I’m glad you enjoyed the audiobook version.


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