Sunday, December 21, 2008

Risk Factor-Charles Atkins

Risk Factor
Charles Atkins
Leisure, Dec 2008, $7.99
ISBN: 9780843960853

Almost forty year old Dr. Molly Katz, single mother of teenagers Josh and Megan, is a third-year resident physician on the psychiatric ward of Boston Commonwealth Hospital. She is shocked and distraught when one of her patients, fifteen years old Garret Jacobs confesses to viciously slaughtering a nurse with a knife. Molly had talked with Garret when he was committed last week with a psychotic diagnosis, but he displayed no violent tendencies. She wonders how she failed to notice his aggression.

However, the obvious closed case for the police that is and not the psychiatric student takes a bizarre twist when a second nurse is brutally bludgeoned to death while Garret is comatose. As she meets with her young patients who run the gamut of mental and emotional issues including violence towards those who love them, Molly increasingly is grateful to God that her two teens seem normal.

This exciting medical thriller focuses on the nature vs. nurture psychology debate; .as Dr. Katz and other professionals mesmerize the audience with the discussions re kids and violence, and the probability diagnosis of future behavior. Another sidebar bewailing the failed health of the insurance system seems a bit forced. Fans will relish this tense tale especially with a shocking twist as Dr. Charles Atkins provides a deep PORTRAIT of teen violent crime with this taut psychological drama.

Harriet Klausner

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