Struck down by a hit-and-run driver, one of the world’s most respected doctors lies comatose in the ICU unit of Boston’s Beaumont Clinic. No one thinks he will survive. Two of his children believe treatment should be stopped. But his daughter Thea refuses to give up hope—and begins to suspect a cover-up. As a brilliant physician who left the hospital to work with the poor, Thea knows all too well the hidden agendas and personal conflicts that lurk beneath the surface of an elite medical center. When a late-night hospital intruder is identified as a professional killer, Thea is convinced her father’s accident was no accident—and someone plans to finish the job…
Who would want to kill a man who saves lives—and why? The answers, Thea fears, are locked deep inside the mind of the only living witness—her father—a man who cannot move or speak. Until the flutter of a single eyelid provides him the means to communicate…and offers Thea a terrifying glimpse into an unfathomable conspiracy.
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“A heart-pounding medical thriller…satisfying, expertly paced [with] enough suspense to keep readers happily turning the pages.”—Boston Globe
“The novel is not merely a thriller but also an exploration of its central character’s unique gifts and her determination to communicate with her comatose father despite overwhelming odds. Another winner from a consistently fine writer.”—Booklist
“A splendid novel.”— Globe and Mail (Canada)
Michael Palmer (1942-2013) wrote internationally bestselling novels of medical suspense, including The First Patient, The Second Opinion, The Last Surgeon, A Heartbeat Away, Oath of Office and Political Suicide. His book Extreme Measures was adapted into a movie starring Hugh Grant and Gene Hackman. His books have been translated into thirty-five languages. Palmer earned his bachelor’s degree at Wesleyan University, and he attended medical school at Case Western Reserve University. He trained in internal medicine at Boston City and Massachusetts General Hospitals. He spent twenty years as a full-time practitioner of internal and emergency medicine. In addition to his writing, Palmer was an associate director of the Massachusetts Medical Society Physician Health Services, devoted to helping physicians troubled by mental illness, physical illness, behavioral issues, and chemical dependency. He lived in eastern Massachusetts.