Richard L. Mabry, M.D., now retired from his medical practice, has made a name for himself as the author of medical thrillers with a heart. The "heart" element is definitely evident in MEDICAL JUDGMENT, his latest suspense novel. Dr. Sarah Gordon wants desperately to heal from the deaths of her husband and young daughter, but does not know how. She has not even been able to attend an entire church service since the funeral eight months ago. Then suddenly it appears someone is stalking her, even setting a fire in her garage. Sarah reaches out to her husband's best friend, lawyer Kyle Andrews who responds with almost eagerness to her need. Soon Detective Larson begins a search to see who might hold grudges against Sarah, an ER doctor, or her late husband. Despite his help, Sarah continues to feel that she cannot trust anyone completely.
Danger toward Sarah quickly escalates, and while readers are privy to thoughts and actions of the perpetrator, his identity is closely hidden, making the book even more suspenseful. Kyle's desperation to be in Sarah's life makes him a suspect, but the times he spends with the local pastor makes his guilt unlikely. Mabry has peopled this book with multiple characters with pain and loss in their recent pasts -- events which could set someone on a course for revenge or a path to forgiveness and new beginnings-- and that makes picking the likely villain complicated. I suspect the ending will be a surprise, or at least the motives behind the stalking will be. Scenes at the ER add medical authenticity to the book, but the story is not really a medical thriller. I received a copy of Mabry's book from Litfuse for my opinion.
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