Friday, December 27, 2013

Doing Harm by Kelly Parsons

Doing HarmSteve Mitchell, happily married with a wife and two kids, is in line for a coveted position at Boston's University Hospital when his world goes awry. His over-reaching ambition causes him to botch a major surgery, and another of his patients mysteriously dies. Steve’s nightmare goes from bad to worse when he learns that the mysterious death was no accident but the act of a sociopath.  A sociopath he knows and who has information that could destroy Steve’s career and marriage.  A sociopath for whom killing is more than a means to an end: it’s a game.  Because he is under a cloud of suspicion and has no evidence, he knows that any accusations he makes won’t be believed. So he must struggle to turn the tables, even as the killer skillfully blocks his every move.

This was an interesting novel, though perhaps, at least for me for different reasons than the author intended.

This is a thriller, but it is a medical thriller, which heaps on the awesome factor, since it involves all kinds of different surgical procedures. It is incredibly detailed, so the author took his time doing research from the right people. This, for me, is what makes the book so interesting. We get a good look at what being a surgeon is like and what it entails. The plot line falls second to the fascinating details we read.

There isn’t much uniqueness to the actual storyline, unfortunately. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out who the villain is, and from then on, there aren’t many surprises left. Think of any action movie you’ve seen, and that’s pretty much what you can expect from this novel. The ending is a bit rushed, and it’s a little too convenient for the protagonist to be an expert in computers and hacking. It just feels forced.

I still think this novel is worth reading because of the many details into a surgeon’s life we get, but if that’s not something you’re interested in, you should choose some other thriller.
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