Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.

  • List Price: $18.00
  • Save: $1.11 (6%)
FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books.
In Stock.
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
Critical Care: A Novel has been added to your Cart
FREE Shipping on orders over $25.
Condition: Used: Like New
Comment: An Untouched item in perfect condition. No signs of wear on the item. Get this Book in 2 DAYS WITH PRIME SHIPPING FROM AMAZON, OR FREE SHIPPING WITH ORDERS OF $35.00. Don't wait weeks to get you item.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 3 images

Critical Care: A Novel Paperback – June 15, 1996

4.1 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews

See all 15 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Price
New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Paperback
"Please retry"
$16.89
$2.20 $0.01

The Amazon Book Review
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
$16.89 FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books. In Stock. Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
click to open popover


Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Dooling's 1992 debut novel features a young doctor ensnared in a legal battle over the fate of a comatose man.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

This novel moves between the extremely vivid realities of a hospital's intensive care unit to the surreal dreaming of terminally ill patients. It describes the hospital setting from the viewpoint of a young resident, Peter Werner Ernst. Ernst is caught up in many crises, including a legal battle between two daughters who are fighting for control of their father's money. One daughter wants to end his life support systems immediately so that she can inherit his fortune. The other daughter wants to prolong his life for a few months so that the fortune will fall to her. Through their manipulations, Ernst faces the decision of whether to let the man live or die. Detailed descriptions of the frenetic hospital activity make this exciting to read. Recommended for popular fiction collections.
- Kathy Armendt Sorci, IIT Re search Inst., Annapolis, Md.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

The latest book club pick from Oprah
"The Underground Railroad" by Colson Whitehead is a magnificent novel chronicling a young slave's adventures as she makes a desperate bid for freedom in the antebellum South. See more

Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Picador; Reprint edition (June 15, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312143044
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312143046
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.6 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,322,658 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I plucked this book off a library shelf in 1996 only because the author's last name caught my attention as being similar to my own. I took it and 6 other novels home and sat down to take a quick preliminary glance at all of them, happening to start with CC. Three hours later, I was still in the same place, alternately howling with laughter and shouting out "Richard Dooling is a GENIUS!" This novel has everything--everything I like, at least: black humor, mordant sociology, unusual but believable and mostly even likeable characters, a plot that keeps you turning pages as fast as you can while at the same time wishing the book would not end, mystery, surprises, an inside look at an arcane profession, and finally, wisdom that doesn't seem hokey. I went back to the library in search of information about the author and--this was 1996, remember--found only a couple of reviews, in library journals, and the reviewers had not understood the book AT ALL. Its fortunes improved somewhat after his second novel was published. The movie was also superlative but went largely unnoticed. I recommended both novel and movie to many friends, and several told me one or the other was just too "strong" for their taste. Maybe it just hits too close to home. I have found most of the same qualities in Dooling's subsequent novels, which because of their subjects--Africa, cyberspace--may be far enough removed from what really hurts us here in the U.S. to be more popular.
Comment 14 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
I read Critical Care as soon as I finished Dooling's latest novel, Brain Storm. I was impressed that Dooling possessed such a huge mastery of the world inside the Intensive Care Unit AND of the law. This book presents similar types of ethical questions that Brain Storm does, but all of it is couched in hilarious dialogue and personal character reflections. Make sure to read this book in a place where laughing outloud won't get you thrown out. Great Book (I just started his other novel, White Man's Grave).
Comment 6 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Before taking on Richard Dooling's "White Man's Grave" (a National Book Award finalist), I decided to try out a shorter work of his, namely this 1992 debut work. Frankly, there's not much of a story here. I think even each of the five-star reviewers on these pages would attest to that.

What there is, however, is wonderful insight on the medical profession, especially regarding the dynamics and motivations of ICU care. For anyone in medicine, or even for someone who has a good friend or relative in the profession, "Critical Care" is a must-read. For those who live the life depicted in Dooling's book, there will surely be laughs, head-shaking assents and the occassional exclamatory "Yes!"

Where this book also excels is in its depictions of where the medical and legal professions intersect. In fact, the hospital's in-house counsel has some wonderful things to say to the book's protagonist, Peter Werner Ernst, about 'the truth':

"You must understand that in any litigation conducted by competent attorneys the truth will come out; it's only a matter of when. you must also understand that it is far better for both you and the Medical Center if the truth comes out sooner rather than later."

"Cross-examination can be a very unpleasant experience, even for a witness who is telling the truth. Successfully telling lies is almost impossible. Lies change. The truth does not change. If the honest witness gets confused during questioning, he or she need only remember the truth and cling to it and give the same, consistent answers to every question, even questions for which the witness is unprepared. If the witness is not telling the truth, his or her story will change.
Read more ›
Comment 4 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
"Critical Care" has Dooling's first and perhaps best novel. It contains his usual blend of medical and legal background themes leavened with his acerbic humor.
Unlike his previous novel ("Brain Storm") this is story is based more on the medical theme and less the legal. The story is about the ethical choices a doctor working in an Intensive Care Unit (ICU) has to make. Doolings style is good, and his ironic descriptions are precious. Yet the book is serious, I'm thinking seriously about a living will after having read this.
One failing I am beginning to find, is that the author only has one character. The doctor in this story is too similar to the lawyer in "Brain Storm" and the Indiana insurance adjuster in "White Man's Grave".
Recommended for those who would like to read about an ironic Dr. Kildare.
Comment 4 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The author's way with words, expressing truth in literate hilarious sarcasm, would make the book worth reading even if the plot and content weren't remarkable --which they definitely are. Absolutely loved it. Best of the Dooling books I've read.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Writing Excellent

Plot Excellent

Pace Moderate

I love this author's work -cynical, black humor, my personal favorite. He writes exceptionally well. His writing could make an insurance brochure interesting. The plot itself often takes a back seat to his cynical description of the medical field. As a professional in the health care field, a lot of this stuff is sad but true. The plot moves along well even though it's frustrating watching the protagonist sink into a quagmire brought on by his bad decisions. This book is an excellent read. That being said, dark humor is definitely an acquired taste.
Comment 2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Critical Care: A Novel
Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more about Amazon Giveaway
This item: Critical Care: A Novel