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Oliver Sacks Books In Order

Publication Order of Non-Fiction Books

Migraine (1970) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Awakenings (1973) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Leg to Stand On (1984) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat and Other Clinical Tales (1985) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Seeing Voices (1989) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Island of the Colorblind (1993) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
An Anthropologist on Mars: Seven Paradoxical Tales (1995) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Hallucinations (1995) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Uncle Tungsten: Memories of a Chemical Boyhood (2002) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Oaxaca Journal (2002) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain (2007) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Asylum: Inside the Closed World of State Mental Hospitals (2009) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Mind's Eye (2010) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
On the Move: A Life (2015) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Gratitude (2015) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle


Oliver Sacks was a famous neurologist and author from the United States. Even though he was a British national, he spent most of the days of his career as a neurologist in America. He was born on July 09, 1933 in London, The United Kingdom. The writing career of Oliver was also a fruitful one as he went on to write a few successful books about the patients he treated. The most famous book written by him was the ‘Awakenings’, which went on to be made into a film starring Robert De Niro and Robin Williams and had the same title too. The other books written by Oliver were based on the science and nonfiction genres. He died on August 30, 2015 due to an ocular tumor in his brain at the age of 82. As a child, he was the youngest among 4 siblings. His parents belonged to a very prosperous family in North London and were Jewish by faith. His father, Sam, was a physician by profession while his mother, Elsie, was a surgeon. At the age of 6, Oliver and his brother were sent to boarding school in the Midlands as a safety measure taken by his parents in order to save them from The Blitz. He remained in the boarding school till the age of 10 and went on to become a skillful chemist in his youth.

As his parents were elated to the medicine background, he also showed keen interest in medicine and enrolled himself in The Queen’s College at Oxford University in the year 1951. Oliver graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in biology and physiology in the year 1954. He continued his studies in the same college and also obtained his Master of Arts degree as well as an MB ChB in Chemistry and qualified himself to practice medicine. Oliver converted his British qualifications into American recognition and obtained an MD which allowed him to practice medicine in the U.S. He moved to New York in the year 1965 and began taking therapy sessions twice a week. Later in the same year, Oliver joined the Beth Abraham Hospital as a consulting doctor in the chronic care facility. At the hospital, his first patients were a group of survivors of sleeping sickness that had spread in the 1920s. Oliver studied the inability of the patients to move themselves for so many years due to the sickness and this formed an important part of his book Awakenings.

Oliver spent around 40 years of his life serving at the Beth Abraham Hospital. He was a firm believer that music has therapeutic effects on the human mind and brain and also used it practically on his patients. In order to honor his outstanding contributions at the hospital, the Institute for Music and Neurologic Function bestowed an award named Music Has Power on him in the year 2006. Oliver also served at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine as a clinical professor. He was appointed as the professor of clinical psychiatry and neurology by the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons in the year 2007. Later, he went on to become a member of a number of arts academies in America. He has to his name a number of honorary doctorates from various colleges in The United Kingdom and The United States. In the year 2008, Oliver was appointed as the CBE. An asteroid discovered in the year 2003 has been named after him as Oliversacks, which is around 2 miles in diameter.

Oliver Sacks has written a total of 10 books in his writing career, all of which were highly appreciated by his fans. Most of his books were written along the course of the medical treatment of his patients. Hence, his books have come out with gaps of a few years. The first book written by Oliver was titled ‘Awakenings’ which was published by the Vintage publishing house in the year 1999. The book was first published in the year 1973. The plot of the book revolves around a group of patients who were suffering from sleeping sickness which they had contracted during the great epidemic of the 1920s just after the First World War. The story of the group of patients is very remarkable as they were frozen for 4 decades and the doctors had lost all hopes of their recovery. It was in the year 1969 when Dr. Sacks treated them with a new drug called L-DOPA. The drug began to show some ‘awakening’ effects on the patients, which was the first positive sign they showed in four decades. The effects of the drug continued to show astonishing and explosive improvements in the patients. Dr. Sacks began recording the changes in his patients over the course of time and as a result, completed an extraordinary description of the transformations in the lives of his patients. This helped him to be recognized as a noteworthy writer as well and also helped to reintroduce a changed world. The book was adapted into a movie of the same name in the year 1990. It had prominent actors like Robert De Niro and Robin Williams in the lead roles. The book won the Hawthornden Prize in the year 1974.

One of the other books written by Oliver was the ‘Hallucinations’ which was published in the year 1995. The book was published again in the year 2012 by the Knopf publishing house. The book deals with the lives of the patients suffering from hallucinations and gives a detailed explanation about the symptoms, effects, treatment, and transformations in the lives of the people suffering from hallucinations. Oliver says in his book that the hallucinations are not only depicted by the insane people, but they can also be linked to intoxication, injury, sensory deprivation or illness. The people having migraines may see disturbing figures of objects and animals. It can be acquired simply due to a fever or even during falling asleep or waking up. Studies have shown that humans have experienced such hallucinating visions for thousands of years and they sometimes also used certain compounds to achieve them purposely. During the 1960s, Dr. Sacks had a keen interest in psychedelic. He himself used to have migraines and a as result, he began investigating the various types of hallucinations and migraine experiences. He began studying the behavior of the hallucinating patients in order to understand the brain structure. The book went on to be nominated for the Wellcome Book Prize in the year 2014.

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