- Mass Market Paperback: 480 pages
- Publisher: St. Martin's Paperbacks; Reprint edition (February 2, 2016)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1250033489
- ISBN-13: 978-1250033482
- Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1.2 x 7.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 222 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #153,681 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Doing Harm: A Novel Mass Market Paperback – February 2, 2016
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“Best damn medical thriller I've read in 25 years. Terrifying OR scenes, characters with real texture.” ―Stephen King
“Doing Harm is a terrific medical thriller--compelling, gripping, and terrifying.” ―Harlan Coben, author of Six Years
“A twist worthy of a surgical knot. Flawed characters standing on moral pedestals. Insight into the world of medicine and the ambitious geniuses who make life and death decisions. Doing Harm is more faction than fiction, presenting a world so close to our own that you find yourself second guessing the characters as if they're sitting next to you. Repeatedly, I found myself breathless and troubled yet compelled to keep reading. Brilliant.” ―Ridley Pearson, author of Choke Point
“A classic cat-and-mouse game with a refreshing, unexpected twist. It opens with some remarkable bait--dangling a hook that the reader will definitely want to bite. Top notch storytelling.” ―Steve Berry, author of The King's Deception
About the Author
KELLY PARSONS is a board-certified urologist with degrees from Stanford University, University of Pennsylvania, and Johns Hopkins, and he is on the faculty at the University of California San Diego. He lives with his family in Southern California. Doing Harm is his first novel.
Top customer reviews
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As a matter of personal taste, I'd give the book 5 stars if the writer had spent a bit more time polishing the delivery and not assumed that because they are well versed in medicine and have developed a good plot with clearly drawn characters, their writing would automatically be top notch. The places where this book was just a bit weak were more noticeable because of its many strengths.
The overall story delivery was clinical, above and beyond the first person narrator being a clinician. I kept hoping for art- that smoothness of phrase that tells you the author has worked to choose exactly the right word and tone. I didn't find it.
Also, the I think that the climax scene has a bit of a heavy handed deus ex machina feel to it.
The other less than flawless aspect of this excellent book deserves a spoiler alert, although I don't intend to actually spoil the plot. Just want to be sure to avoid giving anything away without warning: SPOILER(ish) ALERT:
Its not really credible that the main villain is able to function at the level they do as a main villain, while still functioning in other capacities. That level of psychopathy just isn't constant with their non villain role performance as it is described. I know that this criticism is nonspecific, and would explain it more clearly, but I don't want to risk actually posting a spoiler.
Overall, I think Kelly Parsons has done an excellent job, and deserves many congratulations on this story.
I think the story would be even better if the author went over the book once finished, and polished up their undeniable skill as a master story teller, by focusing on the art aspect of their story delivery.
I also felt like I got an insiders view into the world of medicine and patient care from a doctor's perspective. It made me think about all the struggles and balancing acts that doctors have to go through- healing patients, meeting their expectations, running a business, etc. It really came into clear view for me after a patient's family in the story is so grateful...even after having received less than optimal care for their loved one.
I also thought the main character was very relatable. He wasn't an anti-hero...but he's certainly no saint either. He felt like a normal guy (a high achieving doctor, that is) who doesn't always act bravely, valiantly, or the way he thinks he ought to act, especially when his back's against the wall with extraordinary stresses in his life. I can relate.
Some of the descriptions of supporting characters and the one-liners were brilliant. My favorites were the description of someone being "one celery stick short of clinical malnutrition" and when another particularly overachieving character decides to grammatically correct the old adage by announcing "Nuestra casa, su casa." Priceless.
I think it's the perfect book for your next long plane flight or vacation when you have some good uninterrupted reading time.