Overflowing toilets and the stench of decomposition made the hot air practically unbreathable. Communication with the outside world was sparse and rescue efforts sporadic. The sound of gunshots from the darkened streets and the swirling rumors of martial law and bands of looters made the staff question whether anyone would leave the hospital alive. What they did next forms the basis of…“Five Days at Memorial,” a gripping, comprehensive account of the desperate times and difficult decisions of the beleaguered hospital’s staff. Fink’s exhaustively researched book is a triumph of journalism, based on six years of dogged reporting that earned her remarkable access to the patients and staff who endured the ordeal, and to the investigators and attorneys who questioned their actions after the waters receded and order resumed.
The book’s title misleads, since he forcefully argues that no single known gene is sufficient to ensure athletic success. His answer to the question “Nature or nurture?” is both. If that sounds like a hedge, it isn’t: instead, it’s a testament to the author’s close attention to nuance. He approaches his subject like a scientist, stopping to examine the uncertainties and taking care not to overgeneralize.