Excerpt from Vector by Dr Robin Cook, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reviews |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

Vector

by Dr Robin Cook

Vector
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    Jan 1999, 404 pages
    Paperback:
    Jan 2000, 416 pages

  • Rate this book


Buy This Book

About this Book

Print Excerpt

Chapter One
Monday, October 18, 4:30 A.M.

The hum of the commuter plane's engines was ragged. One moment they were screaming as the plane headed inexorably earthward, the next they were eerily silent, as if they had been inadvertently switched off by the pilot.

Jack Stapleton watched in terror, knowing that his family was aboard and there was nothing he could do. The plane was going to crash! Helplessly he shouted NO! NO! NO!

Jack's shouting mercifully yanked him from the clutches of his recurrent nightmare, and he sat bolt upright in bed. He was breathing heavily as if he'd been playing full-court basketball, and perspiration dripped from the end of his nose. He was disoriented until his eyes swept about the interior of his bedroom. The intermittent sound wasn't coming from a commuter plane. It was his telephone. Its raucous jingle was relentlessly shattering the night.

Jack's eyes shot to the face of his radio alarm clock. The digital numbers glowed in the dark room. It was four-thirty in the morning! No one called Jack at four-thirty. As he reached for the phone, he remembered all too well the night eight years ago when he'd been awakened by a phone call informing him that his wife and two children had perished.

Snatching the receiver from its cradle Jack answered the phone with a rasping and panicky voice.

"Uh oh, I think I woke you up," a woman's voice said. There was a significant amount of static on the line.

"I don't know why you'd think that," Jack said, now conscious enough to be sarcastic. "Who is this?"

"It's Laurie. I'm sorry I've awakened you. It couldn't be helped." She giggled.

Jack closed his eyes, then looked back at the clock just to make sure he had not been mistaken. It indeed was four-thirty in the morning!

"Listen," Laurie continued. "I've got to make this fast. I want to have dinner with you tonight."

"This has got to be a joke," Jack said.

"No joke," Laurie said. "It's important. I have to talk with you, and I'd like to do it over dinner. It's my treat. Say yes!"

"I guess," Jack said, reluctant to commit.

"I'm going to take that as a yes," Laurie said. "I'll tell you where when I see you at the office later on this morning. Okay?"

"I suppose," Jack said. He wasn't as awake as he'd thought. His mind wasn't working up to speed.

"Perfect," Laurie said. "See you then."

Jack blinked when he realized Laurie had disconnected. He hung up the phone and stared at it in the darkness. He'd known Laurie Montgomery for more than four years as a fellow medical examiner in the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner for the City of New York. He'd also known her as a friend---in fact, more than a friend---and in all that time she'd never called him so early in the morning. And for good reason. He knew she was not a morning person. Laurie liked to read novels far into the night, which made getting up in the morning a daily ordeal for her.

Jack dropped back onto his pillow with the intent of sleeping for another hour and a half. In contrast to Laurie, he was a morning person, but four-thirty was a bit too early, even for him.

Unfortunately it was soon apparent to Jack that more sleep was not in the offing. Between the phone call and the nightmare, he couldn't get back to sleep. After half an hour of restless tossing and turning, he threw back the covers and padded into the bathroom in his sheepskin slippers.

With the light on, Jack regarded himself in the mirror while running a hand over his stubbled face. Absently he noted the chipped left incisor and the scar high on his forehead, both mementos of some extra-office investigating he'd done in relation to a series of infectious-disease cases. The unexpected fallout was that Jack had become the de facto guru of infectious diseases in the medical examiner's office.

Reprinted from Vector by Robin Cook by permission of G. P. Putnam's Sons, a member of Penguin Putnam Inc. Copyright 1999 by Robin Cook

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!
Member Benefits

Join Now!

Check the advantages!
Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year

    •  
    • FREE
    • MEMBER
    • Range of media reviews for each book
    • Excerpts of all featured books
    • Author bios, interviews and pronunciations
    • Browse by genre
    • Book club discussions
    • Book club advice and reading guides
    • BookBrowse reviews and "beyond the book" back-stories
    •  
    • Reviews of notable books ahead of publication
    •  
    • Free books to read and review (US Only)
    •  
    • Browse for the best books by time period, setting & theme
    •  
    • Read-alike suggestions for thousands of books and authors
    •  
    • 'My Reading List" to keep track of your books
    •  

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket
    The Marriage of Opposites
    by Alice Hoffman
    Alice Hoffman's latest work, The Marriage of Opposites, is a historical fiction novel focusing on ...
  • Book Jacket: Miss Jane
    Miss Jane
    by Brad Watson
    National Book Award Finalist Brad Watson returns with an intimate novel about one woman's journey to...
  • Book Jacket: Dinner with Edward
    Dinner with Edward
    by Isabel Vincent
    In late 2009 Isabel Vincent and her family were still newcomers to New York City. She and her ...

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    The Secret Language of Stones
    by M. J. Rose

    "A fantastic historical tale of war, love, loss and intrigue."
    – Melanie Benjamin

    Read Member Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    Since She Went Away
    by David Bell

    A chilling novel of guilt, regret, and a past which refuses to die...

    Read Member Reviews

Members review books pre-publication. Read their opinions in First Impressions

Book Discussions
Book Jacket
Girl Waits with Gun
by Amy Stewart

An enthralling novel based on the forgotten true adventures of one of the nation's first female deputy sheriffs.

About the book
Join the discussion!
Summer Stunner
Summer Giveaway

Win 5 books, each week in July!

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

W M T N, W C F All

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.

 
X

BookBrowse Summer Giveaway

We're giving away
5 books every
week in July!