Judith D Collins
By: John Benedict
Publisher: Oceanview Publishing
Publication Date: 12/1/2015
My Rating: 4 Stars
When a colleague’s patient suffers a bizarre reaction in the operating room, Luke Daulton, a newly minted anesthesiologist, volunteers to help. Despite the surgical team’s best efforts, the patient succumbs to a rare anesthetic complication.
Luke becomes perplexed, even suspicious, over their inability to save the woman. Is it possible that the diagnosis was wrong? Or, worse yet, was the diagnosis faked? Luke even wonders if his boss Dr. Katz is involved.Too busy with the rigors of a new job and his pending fatherhood, Luke is forced to put his suspicions on hold. When his wife, Kim, faces a C-section, his fears are reignited. Could there be a murderer—or murderers—operating in his hospital? Could his wife’s obstetrician be involved? When the C-section goes horribly wrong, Luke must launch into action to save his wife and baby and expose the conspiracy he’s uncovered.
A special thank you to Oceanview Publishing and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review. John Benedict delivers an action-packed, psycho-crime-medical thriller, FATAL COMPLICATIONS -- a series of bizarre anesthetic deaths, a conspiracy, a deadly game of revenge, and a madman – putting everyone is danger, crossing his path. The book opens fifteen years earlier, with a fire (an inferno). A man is asking a woman where is David? A missing dog and son. He can hear his son crying out for help. A dad is trying to save his son—he is so close. Flash forward, we meet Dr. Luke Daulton, a young anesthesiologist at Swatara Regional Hospital in Hershey, Pennsylvania. During a C-Section, the patient succumbs due to a rare anesthetic complication. He is also reprimanded by Dr Jason Katz the head of Anesthesiology at the hospital who places blame on Luke's procedure for the loss of the patient, and he is the one who helped. He has his suspicions; however, not sure the motive, or why. Several other unexplained happenings in the OR, and Luke is highly concerned. Who can he tell. He needs someone to confide in. Possibly Rob. Other things begin happening; and he has some suspicions but unsure the motive. At the same time, he is too busy worrying about being a father, and fears his wife will also need a C-section. Could there be a murderer operating in his hospital? His wife has been worried about her husband lately, as something was clearly troubling him. She was not sure if it was the new job, the baby, or what. This part turns to psycho-thriller: The Killer is an evil mastermind out for revenge. Instead of the God-loving man he once was, he has turned to the devil as his master. Filled with demons. Creepy. Spine-tingling. Spiritual Satanism. Pure evil. Hatred. He thinks souls are his for the taking. He enjoys taking people to the dark side and playing on human weaknesses. Greed, pride, political power, egos, sex, adultery, drugs, alcohol…blackmail; there are many ways to destroy; he knows just how to get to them. To control them. Big egos need big cash. Human Flaws. Absolute Power. (Satanic demon worship- A trip to the supernatural). Think The Devil’s Advocate. As the book moves on we learn the connection with the tidbits of information at the beginning of the book about the fire. Then there is Rob Gentry, a 50 year-old OB/GYN doc who is in the throes of marital woes, as he finds himself tempted by the beautiful Gwen Miller. As his personal life spins out of control, he stumbles upon a murder for hire ring. He has to make several life-altering decisions which will ultimately determine his fate. The feds start snipping around Swantara Regional. The mastermind killer is mildly concerned about Daulton and Gentry. The two of them together could be dangerous. However, he has a plan. A bigger one. He will rule. He pulls the strings. When his wife, Kim’s procedure takes a wrong turn, they are placed in danger, Luke must do whatever it takes. He needs a carefully crafted plan of attack. He has no clue how big this is. When you reach the 50% mark, things are tense and the suspense high. Adrenaline fueled! Readers get updates by month and time, a race against time for a riveting page-turner. From Sept – Nov we get play by play. Benedict, the author knows his way around a hospital and operating room-- Each heart-pounding moment is vivid, fearful, dangerous. Lives are at stake and one wrong move could kill the people he loves. Meanwhile Bart Hinkle, is running for another term as senator-- He learns that there is a way that his problem could be solved, permanently. Senator Pierce is having his gallbladder out—what is the plan? A plot to kill. Bodies are piling up. Clues- a puzzle SUDOKU. Luke has to save his wife and unborn baby. A fatal complication. Good versus evil. My neck was in a knot by the time I finished…what a roller-coaster ride. The pace never ceases until the final moment. I have two friends which are anesthesiologists, and can only image the stress and the high stakes environment. I hear their stories. Lives are in their hands and for someone such as myself with pages of allergies and anaphylaxis.. equipped with an Epi-pen at all times, have little trust in them, doctors, or hospitals. However, I do love fiction crime medical thrillers and let me say, this is one to read! If you enjoyed Trauma Michael & Daniel Palmer (one of my top books of 2015), you will enjoy this well-plotted psycho-suspense. There is a lot packed into one book. A number of unique comparisons between the two strong forces. Father and son relationships. Good versus evil. Spirituality and faith. How grief gets out of hand, and can cross into a deep complex psychological disorder with deadly consequences.
About the Author
Dr. John Benedict, husband and father of three sons, graduated cum laude from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and entered post-graduate training at Penn State University College of Medicine.
There, he completed medical school, internship, anesthesia residency and a cardiac anesthesia fellowship. He currently works as an anesthesiologist in a busy private practice in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
Dr. Benedict has been writing stories since high school, but his writing was put on hold to pursue a medical education and start a family. Finally, after a 15-year pause, he returned to the keyboard to scratch the writing itch again and thus Adrenaline, his first novel—a gritty medical thriller with a realism borne of actual experience—was born. Read More