The Doctor is Sick Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of The Doctor is Sick

Dr. Edwin Spindrift's life as an ordinary linguistics professor grinds to a halt when his repeated blackouts raise suspicion that he may have a brain tumor. He is sent home from Burma to London to be treated at a mental institution chock full of head injured and mentally ill patients. His treating physician, Dr. Railton, calmly assures Edwin that surgery is the necessary protocol for his condition, and Edwin's wife agrees. The decidedly unsympathetic Mrs. Spindrift visits Edwin accompanied by other men, and sometimes even sends these men in her stead to visit her ailing husband. Fearful that the surgery is not necessary and that he is losing his wife, Edwin escapes the hospital and finds himself with his head shaved, shirtless and penniless on the streets of London.
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Out on the streets, the highly educated Edwin finds himself struggling to accomplish the simplest of tasks, and employs the help of a bawdy cast of characters along the way. Edwin embarks on a hunt for his wife, who seems to move on to the next hotel/man/opportunity just before he manages to catch up with her. What he lacks in street savvy, Edwin makes up for with his ability to see things from many points of view and to make the best of the opportunities presented to him.
The review of this Book prepared by Julie M

Chapter Analysis of The Doctor is Sick

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Plot & Themes

Tone of book?    -   humorous Time/era of story    -   1960's-1970's Internal struggle/realization?    -   Yes Struggle over    -   eccentric nature Is this an adult or child's book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book Battle with a psychiatrist    -   Yes Brain/Body disability?    -   mental illness

Main Character

Gender    -   Male Profession/status:    -   teacher Age:    -   40's-50's Ethnicity/Nationality    -   British


How much descriptions of surroundings?    -   8 () Europe    -   Yes European country:    -   England/UK City?    -   Yes City:    -   London

Writing Style

Amount of dialog    -   roughly even amounts of descript and dialog

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Anthony Burgess Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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