The Surgeon

by Tess Gerritsen

Ballantine, September, 2001.
Hardcover, 359 pages.
ISBN: 0345447832

The Surgeon by Tess Gerritsen Dr. Catherine Cordell, a cardiac surgeon at one of Boston's prestigious hospitals, has put behind her a terrifying incident in which she was tortured and nearly killed. By a fluke, Catherine escaped by shooting her assailant, and the case was closed. Years later, another killer is murdering young women in Boston in a truly gruesome manner (he operates on them without the benefit of anesthesia, then slits their throats.) The press has nicknamed the killer "the Surgeon." Detective Thomas Moore and his partner Detective Jane Rizzoli of the Boston Homicide Unit are assigned to the case. Moore is saddened by the death of his wife, and Rizzoli has a major chip on her shoulder from her continual harassment as the only female in the homicide unit. The case is a puzzler; with the original killer dead, could the new murderer be a copycat killer? It seems unlikely, given that the most gruesome details of the case were never revealed to the public. But it's clear that the killer is determined to finish the job on Catherine, and he grows closer to his goal with every step.

Tess Gerritsen, a medical doctor and author, writes with knowledge and authority, especially in the gripping ER scenes. The suspense genre is an increasingly crowded one, and it's always exciting to find an author who excels in writing gripping stories which titillate as much as they entertain. Tess Gerritsen is one author whose works stand out for their excellent prose, well-drawn characters and high-octane suspense. Highly recommended.

--Claire E. White

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This review was published in the Oct. - Nov., 2001 of The Internet Writing Journal.

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