Another riveting thriller from Arrow's master of suspense
Michael Palmer spent twenty years as a full-time practitioner of emergency medicine and is currently an associate director of addiction medicine in Massachusetts. He can be contacted at www.michalepalmerbooks.com
Palmer's ninth medical thriller (after Miracle Cure) probably isn't the book to be reading when you've got a slight headache. Early on, a star Olympic gymnast feels a small pain in her skull, and soon she's having a brain tumor zapped by a flashy new surgical robot. The author, who was a full-time practitioner of internal and emergency medicine for 20 years, tells readers so much about the actual work of brain surgery that some might decide to skip over a few of the more agonizing moments, such as the frenzied operation on a young boy with a bullet wound. Yet these bloody and painful details put readers firmly inside the skin of Dr. Jessie Copeland, a neurosurgeon in her 40s with a combined undergraduate degree in biology and mechanical engineering. Now working under egomaniacal chief surgeon Carl Gilbride at a top Boston hospital, Jessie gets to try out ARTIE (Assisted Robotic Tissue Incision and Extraction) on cadavers, while Gilbride coaxes foundations to cough up millions for the revolutionary new procedure. Attracted by the media attention generated by ARTIE's use (too early, Jessie thinks) on the gymnast, shadowy terrorist Claude Malloche, known as "the Mist," who also has a brain tumor, comes to the hospital for treatmentÄand winds up holding patients and staff hostage in case the operation fails. It's finally up to Jessie and a rogue CIA agent to keep everyone healthy. This graft between medical and terrorist thriller has some rough edges, but the operation is a success. Agent, Jane Rotrosen Agency. (Apr.) Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
It's called ARTIE (Assisted Robotic Tissue Incision and Extraction), and it's an apparatus at the core of Palmer's ninth tale of medical suspense. An innovative robot to be used during surgery, it can, in the hands of neurosurgeon Jessie Copeland, eradicate brain tumors unreachable by traditional methods. Terrorist Claude Malloche is ill with an inoperable brain tumor and has determined that he wants Copeland to remove it. He concocts a complicated scheme to accomplish this, endangering her and others at the medical center. Palmer's novel has all of the ingredients to ensure success--an attractive and exceedingly competent female neurosurgeon, a narcissistic and bumbling senior professor, a clever terrorist, a good-looking but mysterious investigator, and, of course, that high-tech robot that can perform neurosurgical magic. All of this results in another engrossing drama by a master of this genre. Enthusiastically recommended for public libraries. [Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 1/00.]--Linda M.G. Katz, Florence A. Moore Lib. of Medicine, MCP Hahnemann Univ., Philadelphia Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.