Painfully aware of the role of economics in modern life, particularly in the health-care field, Angela returned to school to earn an MBA. Armed with a shiny new degree and blessed with determination, intelligence, and impeccable timing, Angela founded a start-up company, Angels Healthcare, then took it public. With her controlling interest in three busy specialty hospitals in New York City and plans for others in Miami and Los Angeles, Angela's future looks very bright.
Then a surge of drug-resistant staph infections in all three hospitals devastates Angela's carefully constructed world. Not only do the infections result in patient deaths, but the fatalities also cause stock prices to tumble, leaving market analysts wondering if Angela will be able to hold her empire together.
New York City medical examiners Laurie Montgomery and Jack Stapleton are naturally intrigued by the uptick in staph-related post-procedure deaths. Aside from their own professional curiosity, there's a personal stake as well: Laurie and Jack are newly married, and Jack is facing surgery to repair a torn ligament at Angels Orthopedic Hospital. Despite Jack's protests, Laurie can't help investigating - opening a Pandora's box of corporate intrigue that threatens not just her livelihood, but her life with Jack as well.
©2007 Robin Cook; (P)2007 Penguin Audio, a member of Penguin Group (USA), Inc. and Books on Tape. All rights reserved.
"An entertaining mix of suspense, action, and education about medical issues." (Publishers Weekly)
The book was intriguing but not all that different than his other books. Familiarity breeds repetitiveness. Good writing but not significantly different than his other books.
I much prefer Robin Cook's early books. Over the last several years his books are just okay. It is a decent story line, but it is bogged down by a lot of slow reading. Too much explanation on HVAC systems, engineering of a hospital, and boring conversation. In addition, the mafia guys were more comedic than serious.
That said, it was not bad and I did keep listening until the book was finished instead of getting a new book. There are a lot of better books out there, but also a lot worse too.
This was the first time I had listen to an audible book. I really enjoyed this book, because I like medical mysteries. It sure kept you on the edge of your seat. Good listen.
Okay, have to say this one scared the crap out of me, since I am a building principal of a school and the situation and the media scare hype of MRSA in schools. The narrator is great and has me in the seat, but I would really like to focus more on what the medical staff is doing about this risk rather than the mob. Another good one that makes you think yeah, this can really happen in the medical field.
I am a Cook fan, but this book was a disappointment! The narration definitely detracted from the story, but I don't think it would have been much better if I had read it myself. The characters were not very interesting, the story did not hold my interest . . . can't think of anything positive to say.
Although Cook did a lot of research and included vast amounts of little known medical info, his character development was very poor. The cast of hoodlums would have been better used in a comedy routine. His lame use of just about every mafia stereotype known to man became old and bordered on ethnic insult.
The book has a potentially good plot. However, I feel that the storyline was not well developed. It seemed as if I were sailing through a medical text with a little bit of fiction thrown in here and there. The epilogue managed to tie the loose threads together, but failed to weave a good book.
This is definitely RC's worst book to date.
A typical Robin Cook thriller, complete with all the usual medical villains. This particular novel adds a few twists and strange bedfellows to become a particularly vicious critique of boutique medical centers. Nicely paced and well read. The ending was anticlimactic. Only the postscript was helpful in wrapping up the plot loose ends. All in all, a fully enjoyable listen. The plot line was well-researched and Cook knows his stuff. How plausible the scenario outline in Critical really is remains to be demonstrated. Neverless, the novel is thought provoking and should cause readers to seriously consider whether the medical establishment should be allowed to set up these for profit, publicly-held medical centers.
After reading prior reviews I was not sure if I would really like this book or not. I am so glad I decided to stick with it. There was a lot of action and continued twists to keep the mind going.
I was disappointed by the quality of this story written by one of my favorite authors. I actually found it boring and forced myself through it. I kept waiting for the "plot to thicken". The overuse of acronyms was confusing and actually laughable at the end of the book. This is clearly not one of Cook's best works.
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This is the third book in a row I’ve read that has left me with mixed reviews.
My opinion of “Critical” is exactly the same as my review for “Crashers” which was: I liked the Air Crash Investigation angle, yet hated the Irish Terrorists angle.
In this case I would have to say: I liked the Mysterious Death Investigation angle, yet hated the Mobsters Bent on Revenge angle.
Still, in general I would say it was a good read. This was the 4th book in the “Jack & Laurie” series that I’ve read – out of order. I read Book 8, then 9, and 10, and back to 7 with this one. (1 through 6 are not available in Audible).
I’ll definitely read Book 11 if/when it comes out.
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