The Strength of Bone is the story of a North American doctor, a Malawian nurse, and the crises that push both of them to the brink of collapse. With deftly interwoven narratives and a pathological eye for detail, novelist and medical doctor Lucie Wilk brings to life the ambition, the self-destructiveness, and the ultimate resiliency inherent in African relief workers -- and shows, in a place where knowledge can frustrate as often as it heals, that true strength requires the flexibility to let go.
At the hospital in Blantyre, Malawi, Bryce is learning to predict the worst. Racing heart: infection, probably malaria. Shortness of breath? TB. Bryce has come to Blantyre to work off the grief he feels for his old life, but he can't adjust to the hopelessness that surrounds him. He relies increasingly upon Sister Iris's steady presence. It's not until an accident brings them both to a village outpost that Bryce realizes the personal sacrifices Iris has made for her medical training, or that Iris in turn comes to fathom the depth of Henry's loss.