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Teal Reads: Memoir of a Debulked Woman

by on May 4, 2012

Not long ago, we told you about a July book event for a recently published ovarian cancer memoir by Karen Ingalls. Today, I’m here to tell you about another memoir that hit the shelves this week.

The book is called Memoir of a Debulked Woman: Enduring Ovarian Cancer. The author is Susan Gubar, a feminist literary scholar who was diagnosed with advanced ovarian cancer in 2008.

You might be wondering – what on earth is a “debulked woman”? Well, the author underwent a major surgery – a debulking operation resulting in the removal of her ovaries, uterus, fallopian tubes, appendix and parts of her intestine. The goal of this type of surgery is to take out as much of the cancer as possible, as well as the organs that have already been affected by the cancer.

The book deals with the author’s reaction to her diagnosis, the debulking surgery, chemotherapy, and her continuing struggle with ovarian cancer. She recently sat down for a fascinating interview with NPR – you can check it out here. While you’re there, take a moment to read the excerpt provided – Ms. Gubar is an engaging writer. Her memoir has been described (in another fantastic interview) as “a no holds barred account” of the debulking operation and its harsh physical and emotional effects  – it’s well worth a read.

– A.J.


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