Second Suns: Two Doctors and Their Amazing Quest to Restore Sight and Save Lives

Second Suns: Two Doctors and Their Amazing Quest to Restore Sight and Save Lives

by David Oliver Relin
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Second Suns: Two Doctors and Their Amazing Quest to Restore Sight and Save Lives by David Oliver Relin

From the co-author of Three Cups of Tea comes the inspiring story of two very different doctors—one from the United States, the other from Nepal—united in a common mission: to rid the world of preventable blindness.
In this transporting book, David Oliver Relin shines a light on the work of Geoffrey Tabin and Sanduk Ruit, gifted ophthalmologists who have dedicated their lives to restoring sight to some of the world’s most isolated, impoverished people through the Himalayan Cataract Project, an organization they founded in 1995. Tabin was the high-achieving bad boy of Harvard Medical School, an accomplished mountain climber and adrenaline junkie as brilliant as he was unconventional. Ruit grew up in a remote Nepalese village, where he became intimately acquainted with the human costs of inadequate access to health care. Together they found their life’s calling: tending to the afflicted people of the Himalayas, a vast mountainous region with an alarmingly high incidence of cataract blindness.
Second Suns takes us from improvised plywood operating tables in villages without electricity or plumbing to state-of-the-art surgical centers at major American universities where these two driven men are restoring sight—and hope—to patients from around the world. With their revolutionary, inexpensive style of surgery, Tabin and Ruit have been able to cure tens of thousands—all for about twenty dollars per operation. David Oliver Relin brings the doctors’ work to vivid life through poignant portraits of patients helped by the surgery, from old men who cannot walk treacherous mountain trails unaided to cataract-stricken children who have not seen their mothers’ faces for years. With the dexterity of a master storyteller, Relin shows the profound emotional and practical impact that these operations have had on patients’ lives.
Second Suns is the moving, unforgettable story of how two men with a shared dream are changing the world, one pair of eyes at a time.

Praise for Second Suns
“As miracles go, it’s hard to beat making the blind see. Yet that’s exactly what the eye surgeon Dr. Geoffrey Tabin can do. He services poor people in the developing world who have developed cataracts—a clouding of the lens of the eye that is the world’s leading cause of blindness. . . . Second Suns is a hopeful work, a profile of two doctors who have dedicated their lives to bringing light to those in darkness.”Time
“A compelling and inspiring book . . . Second Suns portrays heroic health care delivered under harrowing conditions: Ruit and his teams carry their equipment on multi-day treks up steep mountain trails, sometimes hiking at night with flashlights or head lamps, to reach settlements where they typically spend several days operating on hundreds of villagers in makeshift surgical theaters.”The Washington Post
Second Suns should be required reading for anybody with an interest in humanitarian philanthropy—or, for that matter, a desire to feel a little better about the world.”Outside
“A detailed, heartfelt account of the work of [two] dedicated pioneers.”Kirkus Reviews

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781400069255
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 06/18/2013
Pages: 432
Sales rank: 583,097
Product dimensions: 6.40(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.40(d)

About the Author

David Oliver Relin is the co-author of the #1 New York Times bestseller Three Cups of Tea, which has been translated into more than two dozen languages. He has received numerous awards for his work, including the Kiriyama Prize and a James A. Michener Fellowship. He died in November 2012.

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Second Suns: Two Doctors and Their Amazing Quest to Restore Sight and Save Lives 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A very interesting book. It's not the type I normally read, but I gave it a chance and am glad I did. The story moves quickly and is incredibly interesting. The contrast of operating in make-shift operating rooms versus the high tech operating rooms in the U.S. is enthralling.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Second Suns is a remarkable book about two doctors (one from the U.S. and one from Nepal) who restore sight to the impoverished. The beauty is in the detail of the stories. Highly recommended.
Man_Of_La_Book_Dot_Com More than 1 year ago
Sec­ond Suns: Two Doc­tors and Their Amaz­ing Quest to Restore Sight and Save Lives by David Oliver Relin is a non-fiction account of two oph­thal­mol­o­gists who are work­ing to alle­vi­ate blind­ness in third world coun­tries. Mr. Relin was the author of a sim­i­lar book, Three Cups of Tea, and trag­i­cally com­mit­ted sui­cide after the book’s valid­ity was dis­cred­ited (the rea­sons for the sui­cide are unclear). The book is an easy to read nar­ra­tive of two doc­tors from two com­pletely sep­a­rate lives who work together by per­form­ing cataract surgery in the Himalayas. Dr. San­duk Ruit is a Nepali doc­tor who pio­neered the small-incision cataract surgery using inex­pen­sive (not cheap) lenses. Geof­frey Tabin is an Amer­i­can liv­ing on the edge of what is con­sid­ered accept­able in soci­ety. Tabin, at first, left Har­vard to go moun­tain climb­ing but jointed force with Dr. Ruit. The author doesn’t present the two doc­tors as flaw­less heroes, but as flawed human beings who are doing an extra­or­di­nary ser­vice to make a dif­fer­ence in a remote part of the world. The doc­tors founded the Himalayan Cataract Project (HCP) which is still work­ing to this day to “erad­i­cate pre­ventable and cur­able blind­ness through high-quality oph­thalmic care, edu­ca­tion and the estab­lish­ment of a world-class eye care infrastructure”. While read­ing the amaz­ing story of the two doc­tors, the author also delves into the cul­ture, reli­gion, moun­tain climb­ing and land­scapes of the Himalayas. The book is well writ­ten, fast paced, inspir­ing and enjoy­able touch­ing on an impor­tant sub­ject which should be the topic of con­ver­sa­tion in many places, but sadly isn’t. Dis­claimer: I got this book for free.
readerx More than 1 year ago
I have met Geoff Tabin while on a climbing trip. He's an amazing person.