Putnam, Aug 2007, $25.95
As required the recent infectious disease deaths are brought to the attention of the New York City Office of the Medical Examiner. Dr. Laurie Montgomery cannot help but notice that the abrupt significant jump in these types of deaths are limited to three Manhattan hospitals, all owned by Angels Healthcare. However, when her husband, ME colleague Dr. Jack Stapleton informs her he is undergoing knee surgery at one of the Angels Healthcare hospitals, Laurie becomes alarmed as the number of post procedural deaths by virulent staph infection becomes personal.
Meanwhile Angels Healthcare CEO Angela Dawson struggles with the same deadly issue that makes no sense unless a new pathogen somehow delivered by her staff between the three hospitals is the cause. She desperately seeks to resolve the issue as her firm is going Wall St. public to avoid bankruptcy; bad PR will kill the company even as her prime backer the Mafia will kill anyone who harms the health of their investment.
CRITICAL is the usual Robin Cook medical thriller filled with plenty of non-stop action and cleverly intermingled with health information especially about infectious disease in hospitals. . Fans of Mr. Cook will appreciate the return of Laurie and Jack stars of the entertaining CRISIS and MARKER. Although the mob link is an unneeded sidebar that adds to the body count, the medical master has cooked up another magnificent suspense thriller that will have the audience wondering about hospital stays.