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Fatal Cure Mass Market Paperback – February 1, 1995


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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

If Cook's skills as a writer were as finely tuned as his sense of timing, his 14th medical thriller (after Terminal ) would be a lot more rewarding. Current political events guarantee that a suspense novel centering on health care management will be topical and at least potentially fascinating. Unfortunately, stock characters, stilted dialogue and improbable heroes and villains make for difficult reading here. Idealistic young doctors David and Angela Wilson take positions at a state-of-the-art medical center in a small Vermont town partly because they see it as an ideal spot for their daughter, who suffers from cystic fibrosis. But the town is not as idyllic as it seems, and the hospital is in a desperate financial bind due primarily to its contract with a local HMO, David's new employer. Worse still, patients are dying unexpectedly almost daily, and no one seems to care very much. The deaths are not normal, of course, and astute readers will quickly determine who is behind them, why and--most likely--how. Cook raises troubling questions about the conflicts between medical and financial priorities in managed care (albeit in a somewhat distorted fashion), but it's difficult to get emotionally involved in a scenario as improbable as this one. Literary Guild and Doubleday Book Club main selection; Mystery Guild alternate; Reader's Digest Condensed Book.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

A naive young couple sets out to practice medicine in an idyllic small town and find their dreams shattered within months of their arrival. Four of David Wilson's patients die unexpectedly, Angela Wilson is sexually harassed, and the dead body of an irascible old doctor is found in their cellar. Yes, they do solve the mystery and end up appearing on 60 Minutes describing what health reform could do to American medicine! Several hours of narrative are devoted to describing the Wilsons' stereotypic fairy tale before the plot starts to get interesting. Michael McConnohie reads clearly but is unable to do much with the author's simple sentence structure and unimaginative word choice. The abridged version of this novel, also available from Audio Renaissance (Audio Reviews, LJ 5/15/94), might be a better choice for popular collections.
Juleigh Muirhead Clark, Coll. of William & Mary, Williamsburg, Va.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Berkley; Reissue edition (February 1, 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0425145638
  • ISBN-13: 978-0425145630
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 4.2 x 7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,356,735 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Doctor and author Robin Cook is widely credited with introducing the word 'medical' to the thriller genre, and over twenty years after the publication of his breakthrough novel, Coma, he continues to dominate the category he created. Cook has successfully combined medical fact with fantasy to produce a over twenty-seven international bestsellers, including Outbreak (1987), Terminal (1993), Contagion (1996), Chromosome 6 (1997) and Foreign Body (2008).

Customer Reviews

It isn't like there are no other hospitals in the state.
Amazon Customer
The characters are underdeveloped and frighteningly unrealistic (not to mention just plain stupid.
Tim Foster
There's no depth of character to slow the reader; but the plot weaves as pages turn.
Lee Armstrong

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 10, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This was the first book by Robin Cook I ever read. I have Cystic Fibrosis, so I was immediately drawn to that as part of the subject, and decided to give this "new" (to me) author a chance! I have enjoyed reading Robin Cook ever since, and I am now on Sphinx... which unfortunately is the last one unread for me! Hurry up and write more, Dr. Cook! :-)
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By a reader in Camarillo on April 12, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This book deals with the exciting lives of two doctors and their ill daughter, who move to a new community only to find a dead body in their new house and a town full of secrets. This was a extremely interesting book, with intricate details and an exciting plot. The only drawback to the book was the length. Although the book remained exciting throughout the book, the end could have been tightened to remove unneccesary and sometimes boring information. I would recommend this book to anyone interested in the medical field, or anyone who enjoys a good murder mystery!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on November 26, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Fatal Cure is Robin Cook's most controversial book ever written about the darker side of managed health care in America. A married couple start a hospital business where they can treat several patients in a day, including their daughter who suffers from crystic fibrosis. For awhile, it works until their patients begin to die and when a dead body is discovered is their basement, they begin to lose popularity. A very suspensful book, this could actually happen. Overall, a good book!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By dallasrodgers@mediaone.net on July 11, 1998
Format: Audio Cassette
I enjoyed it greatly. It was a great tapebook, which had a manageable number of characters to keep up with, and a nice weave of stories linking them to the storyline. The conclusion as to the "fatal cure" was something I had long figured out before the somewhat dim-witted physician family around which the story swirled. I agree that the child proved to be the bright light in a gloomy town. I'm dropping my HMO as quickly as I can!
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 7, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Dr David Wilson and his wife Angela Wilson(also a doctor) seek employment at Bartlet Community Hospital,Bartlet desiring to live a quiet and peaceful life in the countryside away from the hustle and bustle of Boston only to find out later that Bartlet is not the mini-heaven they had made it out to be.For Bartlet Community Hospital is a place where people are actually killed by radiation ! This time Cook has truely constructed a horrifying piece of fiction which seems easily possible in reality,considering the technological progress made by this world.Gawd !! I would be real scared to be hospitalized after reading this book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 15, 1997
Format: Mass Market Paperback
As a healthcare professional, Robin Cook's books are
chillingly realistic. Throughout the book I kept telling
myself,"this could never happen". As we recall how bizarre
and unrealistic George Orwell's "1984" seemed initially and
now realize we are living very similar with little more
than a nod of oddity.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 7, 1997
Format: Mass Market Paperback
As a healthcare professional for nearly 28 years, I find Cook's portrayal of the modern day HMO very scary, yet real. I have seen what 'cost containment' can do in real life and this scenario is not beyond the realm of possibility. Cook keeps you on the edge of your seat throughout the book. I could not put it down
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Rachel on December 1, 2008
Format: Mass Market Paperback
In this twist of Cook's signature "doctors-gone-wild" plotline, unsuspecting patients of a rural hospital are plagued by sudden unexplainable deaths as a duo of doctors digs up the dirt. Literally. Although many of Cook's plots are quite similar, his style is fast-paced suspense that will have the readers guessing at the bad-guy until the last turn. I'm generally not a fan of redundant plotlines or recycled characters, but I've recently noticed Cook's works embody a gigantic medical ethics course. Each book explores a new ethical dilemma. Fatal Cure suggests to the reader that although America's medical system needs to be renovated, we may be driving it down an even more dangerous superhighway--one with very few exits. This is not one of Cook's best works. His introduction to the hospital backdrop limps through a few <gag!> administrative meetings. I'm already having nightmares about administrative meetings, thank-you, I don't need to read about them at bedtime. Once the readers zone out (or check their blackberries) through this sludgy beginning, the plot quickly picks up pace. I recommend this book to any avid Robin Cook fan.
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