“I believe in black holes. I believe that as the universe empties into nothingness, past and future will smack together in the last swirl around the drain.”
Abraham Verghese, Cutting for Stone
Spanning the years 1900 to 1977, The Covenant of Water of follows three generations of a family that suffers a peculiar affliction: in every generation, at least one person dies by drowning—and in Kerala on the South Indian Coast, water is everywhere. A shimmering evocation of a bygone India and of the passage of time itself, The Covenant of Water is a hymn to progress in medicine and to human understanding, and a humbling testament to the difficulties undergone by past generations for the sake of those alive today. It is one of the most masterful literary novels published in recent years.
Abraham Verghese is senior associate chair and professor for the Theory and Practice of Medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine. He sees patients, teaches students, and writes. His first book, My Own Country, about AIDS in rural Tennessee, was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. Cutting for Stone, his first novel, has sold over 1.5 million copies in the United States alone and remained on the New York Times bestseller list for over two years.
More about Abraham Verghese
Abraham Verghese’s website
The New York Times, April 27, 2023
The Novel That Led Abraham Verghese to a Medical Career
The Times of India, April 23, 2023
Despite Advances, medicine can only go so far. Life is a terminal condition: Abraham Verghese
“Verghese’s narrative mirrors the landscape it is set in, a maze of connecting storylines and biographies so complex and vast that it’s almost a little crazy. But as one of the characters points out, ‘You can’t set out to achieve your goals without a little madness.'”
Copies of The Covenant of Water along with other titles by Abraham Verghese, are available from White Whale Bookstore.