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This month's BCPL's Reading Challenge is in honor of Black History Month. Here are some of our suggestions, select any title to learn more or to request a copy. You can participate in BCPL's Reading Challenge with the help of a parent or guardian on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram with #Bwellread to earn prizes at the end of each month! 

 

BCPL Reading Challenge 2017 In Partnership with WBALTV

Cover art for 28 Days Cover art for All American Boys Cover art for Back of the Bus Cover art for Because They Marched Cover art for The Book Itch Cover art for Brick by Brick Cover art for Brown Girl Dreaming Cover art for Brown v. Board of Education Cover art for Bud, Not Buddy Cover art for Capital Days Cover art for Courage Has No Color Cover art for Discovering Wes Moore Cover art for The Dream Keeper and Other Poems Cover art for Freedom Summer Cover art for Freedom WalkersCover art for Getting Away With Murder Cover art for Gordon Parks Cover art for Hand in Hand Cover art for Heart and SoulCover art for Hidden Figures Cover art for How it Went Down Cover art for How to Build a Museum Cover art for In the Shadow of Liberty Cover art for Let's Clap, Jump. Sing & Shout Cover art for One Crazy Summer Cover art for Out of Darkness Cover art for PathfindersCover art for Steamboat School Cover art for Stella by Starlight Cover art for This is the Rope

 


 
 

Breakthrough!

posted by: December 29, 2015 - 7:00am

Cover of BreakthroughA fascinating read that focuses on both local and internationally important histories, Breakthrough! Is the record of the surgeon Alfred Blalock, his assistant Vivien Thomas and Dr. Helen Taussig, who teamed up to invent an operation to save some of their tiniest patients. Previous to the innovation of Blalock, Thomas and Taussig in 1944 there was an affliction known as “blue baby” syndrome, in which the patient’s color would change and their breathing would gradually decrease This syndrome was almost always fatal, and affected mostly patients between birth and 5 years of age. Dr. Taussig often worked with and attempted to treat many of these Blue Babies and was the leading expert on the disease  but she needed the help of an experienced surgeon to develop and perform what she thought could be the cure. She, Vivien Thomas and Dr. Blalock were all working at Johns Hopkins at the time and although Blalock was reluctant to take on the task at first, he eventually agreed. Essential to the story is the fact that Thomas, who because of his African American heritage had been kept at the level of assistant instead of given schooling and credentials that would have promoted him to surgeon, was the main developer of the operation, which involved re-routing veins in the heart in order to increase oxygen flow in afflicted patients. The incredible delicacy and skill Thomas possessed could not be put into practice in the operating room directly, but he did assist and direct Blalock every step of the way on the revolutionary day that all three of their efforts paid off and their first young patient was permanently cured.
 

Breakthrough! is a fascinating piece of local history that discusses how much medicine has advanced in this century, the racial and gender barriers we have overcome and those still left to tackle on the horizon. It’s excellent reading for personal interest or for research on the topic of the blue babies disease or any of the individual doctors the account centers around.


 
 
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