Advance reader reviews of Doing Harm

Doing Harm

by Kelly Parsons

Doing Harm by Kelly Parsons X
Doing Harm by Kelly Parsons
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' rating:

  • Published in USA  Feb 2014
    368 pages
    Genre: Thrillers

    Publication Information

  • Rate this book


Buy This Book


Page 1 of 6
There are currently 37 member reviews
for Doing Harm
Order Reviews by:
  • Robert S. (Henderson, NV)


    A Flawed Doctor
    In "Doing Harm" author Kelly Parsons delivers a powerful, tight and compelling novel that is populated with believable and vibrant characters whose lives, during a six week period, are unalterably transformed by their actions and the actions of others. Set in a prominent teaching hospital and in the suburban neighborhoods in which the hospital residents and physicians reside, this is a story of physician ego, depravity and vulnerability which are played out at the expense of patients whose well being and even lives are compromised by the doctors who are entrusted with their care.

    The book has many strengths. First, the story moves at an incredible pace with an electric energy and is conveyed with wonderfully descriptive prose that moves the reader's senses. In fact, the reader is torn between turning the pages as quickly as possible, devouring the plot's twists and turns, and more slowly absorbing the pictures and scenes that the author creates with his thoughtful words.

    The author has also structured the story for maximum effect. Initially, the reader is lulled into a calmness as the author conveys the normalcy and promise of the protagonist's family and professional relationships and career. Suddenly, the character's comfortable life is shattered with magnified impact that is created by the juxtaposition between stability and chaos.

    The final attribute of the book to be highlighted is the effective manner in which the author, who is a physician, provides depth and believability to the plot by weaving through the story information about the institutional and political workings of teaching hospitals, the hierarchical relationships among the hospital doctors of varying rank and status, operating room protocol and various medical conditions and procedures. So often when a novelist sets his story on a stage about which he has substantial first hand technical and professional knowledge, the writing clearly divides between the "background information" and the prose, interrupting the flow of the story. In this book, however, the technical information is an integral part of the writing and seamlessly adds to the story.

    "Doing Harm" is not great literature, but it is a very good book that this reader highly recommends to general book clubs and mystery/ thriller book clubs.
  • Laura M. (Roswell, NM)


    Doing Harm
    This was a great book. It had just enough medical terminology in it to make it real without having so much that it would lose the average reader. The characters were believable and the plot kept me reading to see what was going to happen next. Very enjoyable.
  • Nancy M. (Hillsborough, CA)


    Doing Harm
    I do not usually read books known as "thrillers" but I sure am glad I read this one. I was immediately drawn into this story of a resident surgeon practicing at an illustrious east coast hospital, hoping to be invited onto it's permanent staff when he finally finishes his residency. The physician author knowingly illustrates the trials and tribulations of such a resident, interesting in and of itself, while he uncovers the incidents and protagonist out to keep him from attaining his goal. I was taught me so much about the inner workings of surgery, most of which I hope I never experience, while thoroughly enjoying a compelling novel with a truly unexpected ending.
  • Elly, (Roswell, NM)


    Compelling Debut Novel
    While unexpected life events prevented my delving into this page-turning work, once started, it was impossible to set aside. "Doing Harm" does not release its hold on your attention until the last word, with unexpected twists popping up at each frantic turn of the page. It is well written with strong character development and filled with heart-pounding suspense. Considering the question on the book's cover, "What Would You Do?", I shiver to even contemplate being in our protagonist's position. I have recommended this novel to more than several and am certain that Dr. Parsons has found a second career. Kudos to this debut author...I look forward to more of his work.
  • Janice C. (Hayward, CA)


    Doing Harm
    I enjoyed this book a lot. Great book for a train ride. I just won't be going to the hospital for awhile.
  • Jean G. (Rockford, IL)


    No Harm Taken
    A 40 year career in the medical field made this book a natural choice and I was not disappointed in its authenticity. Although it held my interest, as it will everyone liking medical intrigue, I at first felt it an almost too uncomplicated read, with little literary value. But as the plot starts to twist and turn I no longer cared. And why not have a genuinely good read occasionally?
    The story spans less than 2 months in the life of a highly regarded chief resident surgeon. Technology of the 21st century appears to take a much too relevant role in the care of living, breathing humans. Its capabilities are endless for "doing harm" . This may incite some talk for book clubs. Slight letdown in the ending which also might be for discussion but still a great read.
  • Patricia S. (New Canaan, CT)


    Cat and Mouse Game
    Life seemed to be going well for Steve, a chief surgical resident at University Hospital, his wife Sally and their 2 daughters. He loved being in control-that's why he became a surgeon-but suddenly his life starts escalating downward-out of control. Who or what is responsible for the deadly mistakes at the hospital-doctors' recklessness, bad luck or a manipulative psychopath. A first novel by a doctor, the medical information is accurate, the book tightly written, and the tension rises despite part of the plot being disclosed halfway. I couldn't put the book down and finished it in one day, a month after I had shoulder replacement surgery. It's suspenseful to the last page.

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten!

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Only Child
    Only Child
    by Rhiannon Navin
    Rhiannon Navin's debut novel, Only Child received an overall score of 4.8 out of 5 from BookBrowse ...
  • Book Jacket: Brass
    Brass
    by Xhenet Aliu
    In 1996, Waterbury, Connecticut is a town of abandoned brass mills. Eighteen-year-old Elsie ...
  • Book Jacket: Timekeepers
    Timekeepers
    by Simon Garfield
    If you can spare three minutes and 57 seconds, you can hear the driving, horse-gallop beat of Sade&#...
  • Book Jacket: How to Stop Time
    How to Stop Time
    by Matt Haig
    Tom Hazard, the protagonist of How to Stop Time, is afflicted with a condition of semi-immortality ...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
The Women in the Castle by Jessica Shattuck

A nuanced portrait of war, and of three women haunted by the past and the secrets they hold.

About the book
Join the discussion!

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    Only Child
    by Rhiannon Navin

    A dazzling, tenderhearted debut about healing, family, and the exquisite wisdom of children.
    Reader Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    The French Girl
    by Lexie Elliott

    An exhilarating debut psychological suspense novel for fans of Fiona Barton and Ruth Ware.
    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win Beartown

Now in Paperback!

From the author of a A Man Called Ove, a dazzling, profound novel about a small town with a big dream.

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

T I M A Slip B C A L

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.