Living and Dying in Brick City:

An E.R. Doctor Returns Home

  • By: Sampson Davis, with Lisa Frazier Page
    Produced by Buck 50 Productions
    Read by: Cary Hite
  • Runtime: 8.3 Hours
  • Recording: Unabridged
  • Release date: 2.15.2013
  • Publisher: Buck 50 Productions
  • Genre: Nonfiction/Biography & Autobiography
  • 8.27 hrs2/15/2013Unabridged
  • ISBN-13: 978-1-4708-4248-2
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This is a riveting personal exploration of the health-care crisis facing inner-city communities, written by an emergency room physician who grew up in the very neighborhood he is now serving.

Sampson Davis is best known as one of three friends from inner-city Newark who made a pact in high school to become doctors. Their book The Pact and the work they have done with the Three Doctors Foundation have inspired countless young men and women to strive for goals they otherwise would not have dreamed they could attain. In this book, Dr. Davis looks at the health-care crisis in the inner city from a rare perspective: that of a doctor who works on the front line of emergency medical care in the community where he grew up and as a member of that community who has faced the same challenges as the people he treats every day. He also offers invaluable practical advice for those living in such communities, where conditions like asthma, heart disease, strokes, obesity, and AIDS are disproportionately endemic.

Dr. Davis has struggled with many of the issues troubling his patients. His sister, a drug addict, died of AIDS; his brother is now paralyzed and confined to a wheelchair as a result of a bar fight; and he himself did time in juvenile detention—a wake-up call that changed his life. He recounts recognizing a young man with critical gunshot wounds as someone who was arrested with him when he was a teenager during a robbery gone bad, describes a patient with sickle cell anemia whose case is more complicated than he understands, and explains the difficulty he has convincing his landlord and friend, an older woman, to go to the hospital for much-needed treatment. With empathy and hard-earned wisdom, Living and Dying in Brick City presents an urgent picture of medical care in our cities and an important resource guide for anyone at risk, anyone close to those at risk, and anyone who cares about the fate of our cities.

Editorial Reviews

“This book just might save your life. Sampson Davis shares fascinating stories from the ER and addresses the inner-city health crisis. His book is an important investment in your most valuable resource: your health.”

Suze Orman, #1 New York Times bestselling author

“This book is living proof that behind the boarded up windows of one of America’s most neglected cities, beyond the sorrow and pain, there is much more than we’ve come to expect. There is hope. There is change. There is redemption for Brick City. The book will open your eyes to a part of the world that most of us only see from behind the wheel of a tightly locked car. Sampson Davis is not afraid to lift heavy objects in this world. I’m glad he shared his journey with us, so that we know it is possible.”

James McBride, New York Times bestselling author of The Color of Water

“Riveting…Narrator Cary Hite seamlessly captures Davis and his family, friends, and coworkers, as well as the denizens of his emergency room. Listeners are on hand to hear the pain, tumult, and breakneck pace of one of the most dramatic workplaces imaginable. Excellent sound effects add to the atmosphere. Hearing Davis in action illustrates the tough yet compassionate mix that creates the perfect doctor.”


“A personal and thought-provoking look at inner-city health.”


“An emergency-room doctor relates his experiences to the wider emergency of inadequate health care for inner-city residents in places like Newark, N.J., where he grew up and practiced medicine…A page-turning wake-up call.”

Kirkus Reviews

Author Biography

Sampson Davis was born and raised in Newark, New Jersey. He is a board-certified emergency medicine physician and coauthor of the New York Times bestsellers The Pact, We Beat the Street, and The Bond. He is the youngest physician to receive the National Medical Association’s highest honor, the Scroll of Merit. He is a recipient of Essence and BET humanitarian awards and was named by Essence as one of the forty most inspirational African Americans. He is a founder of the Three Doctors Foundation and practices medicine in New Jersey.

Reader Biography

Cary Hite has performed in several theaters across the country as a cast member in the longest-running African American play in history, The Diary of Black Men. He also appeared in Edward II, Fences, Macbeth, Good Boys, Side Effects May Vary, and the indie feature The City Is Mine. He has voiced several projects for AudibleKids, including Souls Look Back in Wonder, From Slave Ship to Freedom Road, and Papa, Do You Love Me?

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