May Big Ideas Night with Lucy Kalanithi

The story behind the acclaimed #1 New York Times bestselling memoir WHEN BREATH BECOMES AIR

May 9, 2016 in New York, NY

When Breath Becomes Air Paul Kalanithi  Dr. Paul Kalanithi’s #1 New York Times bestselling memoir WHEN BREATH BECOMES AIR took readers by storm in January 2016. Janet Maslin of The New York Times called it “unmissable,” and proclaimed that “finishing this book and then forgetting about it is simply not an option.” Kalanithi was a neurosurgery resident at Stanford and a loving husband when he was suddenly diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer. He died two years later at the age of thirty-seven, eight months after his infant daughter was born. His critically acclaimed memoir, finished with the help of his widow, Dr. Lucy Kalanithi, is a profound, searingly honest, and ultimately life-affirming meditation on the challenge of facing death and the relationship between doctor and patient.

Join us for a special Big Ideas Night with Lucy Kalanithi as she talks with Elisabeth Egan, author and books editor at Glamour magazine, about the process of shepherding Paul’s words and ideas into the world.

Random House’s Big Ideas Night series—held at the publisher’s flagship offices in Manhattan—is a forum for thought-provoking conversations between writers and editors on the topics of politics, world affairs, technology, fashion, philanthropy, and more. These focused dialogues offer exclusive access for guests to dive deeper into a recently released book with fellow readers, as well as network and engage directly with the innovators behind it.

Event Details

What was Included

  • Meet & Greet with Lucy Kalanithi
  • Copy of WHEN BREATH BECOMES AIR (a $25 value)
  • Wine & hors d'oeuvres

Date & Time

May 9, 2016
Doors Open at 7:00pm, Presentation from 7:30pm to 8:30pm


New York, NY

Random House, 1745 Broadway, New York, NY 10019


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Location Big Ideas Night is held at Random House, located near Columbus Circle in Manhattan. The address for Random House is 
1745 Broadway between 55th and 56th Street, 
New York, NY 10019.

A, C, E, 1, 2, 3, N, Q, R to 7th Avenue – 57th Street ; B, D, E to 7th Avenue – 53rd Street; 1, A, B, C, D to 59th Street – Columbus Circle

How do I reserve my seat? Seating is general admission on a first-come-first-served basis.

Where can I contact Random House with any questions? For questions or suggestions, please email For information regarding a press pass, please contact Kate Childs at Random House at 212-782-9278 or

Do I have to bring my printed ticket to the event? No, there is no need to bring a printed ticket to the event. Your name will be on the guest list.

What is the refund policy? Refunds are issued up until 72 hours before Big Ideas Night. After that time, we are unable to offer you a refund, but can provide you with a voucher to attend a future Big Ideas Night instead.

Is my ticket transferrable? Yes, your ticket is transferable. Email to transfer your ticket.

Featured Speaker

Dr. Lucy Kalanithi, MD, FACP, is the widow of the late Dr. Paul Kalanithi, author of the #1 New York Times bestselling memoir When Breath Becomes Air, for which she wrote the epilogue. An internal medicine physician and faculty member at the Stanford School of Medicine in Palo Alto, CA, she completed her medical degree at Yale, where she was inducted into the Alpha Omega Alpha national medical honor society, her residency at the University of California-San Francisco, and a postdoctoral fellowship training in healthcare delivery innovation at Stanford’s Clinical Excellence Research Center.

At the cross-section of her career as a medical professional and her personal experience standing alongside her husband during his life, diagnosis, treatment, and death, Dr. Kalanithi has special interests in healthcare value, meaning in medicine, patient-centered care and, end-of-life care. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her daughter, Elizabeth Acadia.