Patient 002: A Novel

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Rager Media, 2007 - Fiction - 288 pages
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From the author of In the Shadow of Memory, a memoir of living with brain damage, comes a novel about the battleground of human medical research - told from the patient's point of view.
At 41, Sam Kiehl was a successful political consultant, a long-distance runner and rock climber, the single father of a grown son, and lover of a popular newspaper columnist. Then he contracted a virus that targeted his brain and left him totally disabled. With few treatment options available and his health continuing to worsen, Sam seizes upon the chance to offer himself as a subject in the clinical field trial of a new drug, Zomalovir. He becomes "Patient 002" and joins a group of patients from all walks of life who are similarly afflicted and desperate. What happens to Sam, to the young woman named Tracy Marsh with whom he is partnered, and to the others in his group, provides a sometimes shocking, sometimes humorous, always dramatic picture of human medical research, a world seldom seen. As the research subjects respond - or fail to respond - to their experimental treatment, as participating doctors and nurses observe, and as Physicians for Ethical Research, the pharmaceutical company that developed the drug and operates the study, deals with harsh truths about the costs and risks of conducting research, Patient 002 becomes a tale of choices made and consequences faced at the center of the illness experience.
Patient 002 is also a love story, as Sam discovers passion and romance in an unexpected place. It's also a novel of friendships forged in extreme circumstances and of the human capacity for survival in the face of overwhelming obstacles.

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Patient 002: a novel

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A medical thriller? A late middle-age love story with reflections on mortality? It's hard to pin down this novel by a writer with poetry and essays to his credit, as well as earlier fiction (e.g ... Read full review


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About the author (2007)

Floyd Skloot is a creative nonfiction writer, poet, and novelist whose work has appeared in such distinguished magazines as The New York Times Magazine, Atlantic Monthly, Harper's, Poetry, American Scholar, Georgia Review, Sewanee Review, Southern Review, Boulevard, Virginia Quarterly Review, Prairie Schooner, Creative Nonfiction, and Shenandoah. His fifteen books include the memoirs In the Shadow of Memory (University of Nebraska Press, 2003), A World of Light (University of Nebraska Press, 2005), and The Wink of the Zenith: The Shaping of a Writer's Life (University of Nebraska Press, 2008); the poetry collections The Evening Light (Story Line Press, 2001), Approximately Paradise (Tupelo Press, 2005), The End of Dreams (Louisiana State University Press, 2006), Selected Poems: 1970-2005 (Tupelo Press, 2008), and The Snow's Music (Louisiana State University Press, 2008); and the novels Summer Blue (Story Line Press, 1994) and Patient 002 (Rager Media, 2007). He lives in Portland, Oregon, with his wife, Beverly Hallberg, a master gardener and landscape painter, whose light-filled works cross between impressionistic and abstracted styles.

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