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Reviews for Night shift : a novel

Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

A competent medical thriller from the genre's most famous practitioner. In the latest from the author of Coma (1977), husband-and-wife medical examiner team Laurie Montgomery and Jack Stapleton return to investigate a death that hits close to home. The murder victim in question is Susan Passero, a hospital internist who’s killed in a parking garage after her shift; she happens to be Laurie’s “oldest and closest friend.” While doctors at the hospital initially speculate that the death is due to a heart attack, Jack has his doubts and tries to figure out who might have a grudge against the late doctor. After poking around, he finds that Sue had “bump[ed] heads” with two fellow doctors and a hospital executive and that she believed there might be a medical serial killer on the loose in her hospital. Things get more urgent when a charge nurse at the hospital turns up dead, convincing Jack that something’s afoot. Meanwhile, Jack also investigates the death of the wife of a police officer that was possibly staged to look like a suicide, and there’s some family troubles thrown in for good measure. Cook’s writing is not going to win any prizes—consider sentences like “Lots of sarcastic barbs was the bulk of their normal verbal interaction”—and his dialogue is dependably stilted. But Cook’s readers are here for the suspense, and at least he’s good at that part—it’s a pretty solid page-turner even if his prose is as clunky as an engine that’s about to seize. It’s the kind of book you can take on vacation and leave there. An OK mystery that probably won't be the worst thing you read this year. Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.