The Tumor by John Grisham

The Tumor: A Non-Legal Thriller by John Grisham
Publisher: Focused Ultrasound Foundation
Genre: Contemporary
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Lavender

John Grisham says THE TUMOR is the most important book he has ever written. In this short book, he provides readers with a fictional account of how a real, new medical technology could revolutionize the future of medicine by curing with sound.

THE TUMOR follows the present day experience of the fictional patient Paul, an otherwise healthy 35-year-old father who is diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor. Grisham takes readers through a detailed account of Paul’s treatment and his family’s experience that doesn’t end as we would hope. Grisham then explores an alternate future, where Paul is diagnosed with the same brain tumor at the same age, but in the year 2025, when a treatment called focused ultrasound is able to extend his life expectancy.

Focused ultrasound has the potential to treat not just brain tumors, but many other disorders, including Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, hypertension, and prostate, breast and pancreatic cancer.
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For more information, you can visit The Focused Ultrasound Foundation’s website. Here you will find a video of Grisham on the TEDx stage with the Foundation’s chairman and a Parkinson’s patient who brings the audience to its feet sharing her incredible story of a focused ultrasound “miracle.”

Readers will get a taste of the narrative they expect from Grisham, but this short book will also educate and inspire people to be hopeful about the future of medical innovation.

The name John Grisham is sure to catch eyes; however, this work, The Tumor, is completely unrelated to his previous books. Grisham states that this is his most important work. He presents the case of a family man born in 1980 who develops brain cancer, and his story is a sad one. Next, Grisham rewinds the tale in a fascinating way and asks the question, What if this man had been born ten years later?

In a form of reimagined history, he goes through this man’s altered history, one that is brighter due to his updated birth year. How is this so? Well, a new medical procedure is available to this man of a later generation: focused ultrasound.

This medical technology is real. Grisham offers this story to give patients hope. He explains through the use of a fictional man’s story how his life would change through the use of the new technology. He would live longer, his ordeal in the hospital would be quicker and easier, and he would save a lot of money.

This is a quick story but an interesting one. It is bringing to light a new medical breakthrough that people could ask their doctors about.