Surgeon At Arms
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Surgeon at Arms continues the story of the much-admired surgeon, Graham Trevose, who first appeared in The Facemaker. As the Second World War breaks out and begins to yield its countless casualties, Trevose uses his skills as a plastic surgeon to rebuild burned faces and damaged limbs. For this, his grateful patients name him ‘The Wizard’ and he is hailed a hero. Yet Trevose’s rather unorthodox private life begins to make him enemies which prove as much a challenge as his work in the military hospitals. In the rise and fall of this bold, talented yet fallible surgeon, Richard Gordon presents the achievements and disappointments of the entire nation.
dissipation from below the eyes, and the ‘Trevose nose’ was famous in London society—a little too famous: women were starting to recognize its distinctive handiwork across crowded cocktail parties. Perhaps he had made and spent too much money, lived too fashionably. Perhaps his private life unfitted him for employment by His Majesty. He had recently had a close shave from the General Medical Council over the famous ‘infamous conduct’. Or perhaps, he told himself wearily, some stupid clerk in the
pair of you, I gather?’ ‘Yes. Cazalay and that fellow Haileybury were in it together, trying to get me struck off.’ ‘You mean about the actress? What’s her name— Stella Garrod?’ Graham nodded. ‘I’ll concede that Haileybury moved against me through his usual high-mindedness or his hypocrisy—I’ve never really decided which it is. But I can’t understand why Cazalay started him off. Through spite, I suppose.’ ‘Did you know he’s got himself some sort of job in the censorship? Through the title,
north London. Every time one fell the noise sent half a dozen local women into labour, and it was no fun finding your way through blacked-out back streets on a bicycle, loaded like a mule with bags of instruments and dressings, suspected by policemen of being some sort of saboteur, and wondering if the next unheralded missile had your number on it. Alec didn’t like midwifery. He was beginning to see himself as an intellectual, a man of culture, and childbirth was an extremely uncultured pursuit
gathered up her notes. ‘The patient’s doing very well, I’m glad to say.’ ‘That’s splendid. Then we’ll have another one for you to nurse next month.’ ‘I’m afraid I shan’t be here by then, Mr Cooper. I’m leaving to get married.’ Clare stood looking at him, still wondering why she had said it. Graham found a wedding in middle life a surprisingly agreeable experience. Though after all, he told himself, unlike most bridegrooms, he wasn’t marrying an almost total stranger. Graham’s first marriage
had accepted him were too occupied with her work in hospital and her visits to Bristol to give them more than a moment or two together over lunch in Claridge’s. Graham mounted to their seaside bedroom reflecting with amusement that he was facing his bride like the most moral of newly wedded husbands—if one overlooked a year or two during the war. He got into bed making jokes about consummations and such other horribly dignified words festooning the sexual relationship. This time he put out the