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With his medical background Robin Cook has supplied the public with thrillers enriched with basic scientific explanations along with insights into the minds of medical personnel as well as inspecting the innards of clinics. The theme threading this novel seems almost science fiction; it deals with a smart phone app termed iDoc having the capabilities of sensing the bearer’s vital signs, diagnosing conditions, prescribing medications and even performing lab tests from the phone screen. This tool sponsored by insurance handlers has the ability to regulate the release of embedded medicines, check the genome, and like Hal in 2001, can even use the mass of information supplied to independently make its own decisions. This runaway robotic device, which if implemented, would vastly enrich its investors, suddenly turns into a discriminating killer, which if revealed would ruin its backers. Thus the duel between greed and honesty emerges.

While the topic of information technology being actualized in medicine is compelling, unfortunately the moral and immoral protagonists lack any character development, and the actions described are not even worthy of a B-grade film. The story’s hero, supposedly a talented radiologist, comes off as a jerk and the CEO’s are two-dimensional mannikins. Perhaps after thirty previous books, the author has gone into automatic mode, neglecting the ingredients necessary for a potent formula.

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Star Count 2.5/5
Format Hard
Page Count 416 pages
Publisher Putnam Adult
Publish Date 2014-Feb-04
ISBN 9780399166303
Bookshop.org Buy this Book
Issue April 2014
Category Mystery, Crime, Thriller


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