Michele Harper has worked as an emergency room physician for more than a decade at various institutions, including as chief resident at Lincoln Hospital in the South Bronx and in the emergency department at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Philadelphia. She is a graduate of Harvard University and the Renaissance School of Medicine at Stony Brook University. The Beauty in Breaking is her first book.
"Riveting, heartbreaking, sometimes difficult, always inspiring."
-The New York Times Book Review
"The Beauty in Breaking takes us into the life in an emergency room-the drama, the adrenaline, the emotion-with such immediacy that I could not help but be completely enthralled by the individual stories of the patients that Michele Harper treats. But this powerful, poignant page-turner of a book also tells a much larger and universal story about how healing actually happens, not just for broken bodies but for broken hearts and souls. In sharing the stories of her patients and her own life, Harper shows us that that healing begins only after we are broken open ourselves. And she shows us with hopeful, heartbreaking clarity that it comes from healing each other." -Kerry Egan, author of On Living
"The Beauty in Breaking is a compelling page-turner about how Dr. Michele Harper took a broken childhood and wove herself into a strong, honest, compassionate doctor. A must read." -Louann Brizendine, MD, author of The Female Brain
"Tackling such painful subjects as domestic abuse, trauma, and racism with grace and wisdom, this eloquent book probes the human condition as it chronicles a woman's ever evolving spiritual journey. A profoundly humane memoir from a thoughtful doctor." -Kirkus Reviews
"Taking on the painful topics of trauma, domestic abuse, and the 'ubiquitous microaggressions faced by people of color,' Harper witnesses the resilience of the human spirit of her patients and begins her own process of self-healing. . . . This powerful story will resonate with readers." -Publishers Weekly (starred review)
"Harper's words inspire hope and understanding of the importance of peace and acceptance of the past. Poignant, helpful, and encouraging, [her] lessons from life in and outside of the emergency room ultimately teach readers how to trust the healing process." -Library Journal
"In this illuminating memoir, an African American emergency room doctor finds that her patients' stories lead her to make connections between her work and the larger world." -Shelf Awareness
"A book for our times, Harper's debut is a compelling memoir about her life as a Black woman emergency room doctor and how that work overlaps with the complexities of life. Harper explores hurt and healing, race and gender, justice and hope with candor and compassion." -Ms. Magazine
"A moving, beautifully written memoir." -New York Post