If you are looking for a sappy, foolish book filled with self-pity and depressive tendencies, this is not it. “When Breath Becomes Air,” written by Paul Kalanithi, is an emotional and well-written memoir of family, literature and medicine. In spite of its grim connotations, this memoir leaves you stunned and inspired. Even in his brief life, Kalanithi attained notable credits as a surgeon, a scholar, a scientist and, retrospectively, a writer. “When Breath Becomes Air” details Kalanithi’s life as a neurosurgeon and his struggle against stage IV lung cancer. What is interesting part about the book is that the first part reads like any other memoir, detailing his heritage and his coming of age story. However, in the latter part, the book begins to tiptoe into his illness and his abrupt change from doctor to patient. Unlike most writers, Kalanithi had no issues with sharing his worries, fears, faith, tears and knowledge of his terminal disease. This memoir is extraordinary for so many reasons, particularly for depicting the transition of his life from an all-powerful and well-educated doctor to a humble and meek patient. Kalanithi’s refusal to succumb to the cancer, which inevitably consumed him in the end, will inspire those who have major health issues or know someone who does. This memoir also will open the eyes of others and teach them something about new possibilities and how to live life only for today.