Plus visiting Israel, the power of prayer, and concise histories

“Spohn,” the authors write, “was a physician who believed passionately in taking decisive action rather than allowing a patient to die. He openly criticized the benign neglect practiced by timid or ignorant physicians who sympathetically stood by and did nothing or used antiquated techniques.

 

A trailblazing South Texas surgeon still holds the record for the removal of the largest tumor – 328 pounds – from a patient who fully recovered, according to a new biography of  Dr. Arthur Spohn: Surgeon, Inventor, and Texas Medical Pioneer by Jane Clements Monday, Frances Brannen Vick, and Charles W. Monday Jr. (Texas A&M University Press, $35 hardcover).

 

Spohn, born in Canada, came to Texas in 1868 as a military physician, married into a powerful ranching family, opened the first hospital in Corpus Christi, and practiced innovative medicine in the state for 45 years.

 

“Spohn,” the authors write, “was a physician who believed passionately in taking decisive action rather than allowing a patient to die. He openly criticized the benign neglect practiced by timid or ignorant physicians who sympathetically stood by and did nothing or used antiquated techniques.”

 

The book includes several of Dr. Spohn’s medical journal articles, including one from 1906 about removing the barrel-sized ovarian tumor. He spent a week draining 30 gallons of fluid from the tumor before operating. It took two months to close the abdomen after surgery, he wrote, adding “the patient made a good recovery.”

 

 

Visiting Israel: Robbie Freeman Shugart, an author and motivational speaker from Merkel, offers a spiritually passionate tour of Israel in her book, Jerusalem Is Calling: Pilgrimage to the Holy Land (Lifewise Books, $14.99 paperback, also available in Spanish).

 

“Traveling to Israel,” she writes, “experiencing places I had only read about in the Bible, was liberating as I stood where Jesus stood and walked where He walked. Seeing these holy sites restored my faith and was so encouraging. By the power of our Lord, I didn’t come home the same person as I was before I went to Israel.”

 

 

Power of Prayer: Sheri A. Sutton, an inspirational author and poet from Wichita Falls, has published 40 Days: A Journey of Prayer ($13.95 paperback), offering two-page daily meditations covering such topics as grace, acceptance, wisdom, discipleship, forgiveness, obedience, joy, love, peace, and freedom. Each meditation ends with a prayer.

 

“Prayer can change our thinking,” she writes. “Prayer centers us and brings balance to our lives.  Most importantly, prayer connects our heart to God’s heart.”

 

 

Concise Histories: The Texas State Historical Association has published two more books in its Fred Rider Cotton Popular History Series which focuses on compact, easy-to-read historical accounts.

 

San Antonio: A Tricentennial History by Char Miller ($20 paperback) covers the city’s 300 years in 160 pages plus notes and index.

 

Texas and World War I by Gregory W. Ball ($20 paperback) explores the contributions of Texans to the war effort and how the war affected Texas, covering the topic in 129 pages plus notes and index.

 

Glenn Dromgoole’s latest book is “Book Guy: One Author’s Adventures in Publishing.” Contact him at g.dromgoole@suddenlink.net.