Thursday, November 20, 2014

"Don't Go" by Lisa Scottoline ~ Book Review

Dr. Mike Scanlon is a doctor serving in Afghanistan.  On his second tour his thoughts are frequently at home with his wife, Chloe, and their new baby.  Chloe was not happy for Mike to be going back on a second tour and so he deals with guilt while in Afgahanistan.  When news comes that Chloe has died at home in a freak home accident Mike is devastated.   Coming home on leave to make funeral arrangements, Mike is hit with the oddness of her death and is blindsided with a secret that she had been keeping.  Now he has a precious baby girl, that doesn't know him at all and is terrified of him, a medical practice that is changing without his input and the knowledge that he still has to go back to Afghanistan.  Leaving his baby girl in the hands of Chloe's sister and husband, Mike goes back to finish his deployment.  But there, too, things start to fall apart.  The medical compound is hit with an attack and 2 doctors lose their lives.  Now with a doctor shortage he is under pressure to stay and serve another year.  But his choice brings life long consequences and he must gather up everything within himself to fight for what is most important.

I really enjoyed this book from one of my favorite authors.  In it she explores what it means to be a father, a man and a hero.  It's a departure from her other books whose main character has always been women.  As Mike faces his world falling apart around him, he must figure out how to deal with what he doesn't want to admit to anyone, let alone himself.  The action goes back and forth from fast paced to very emotional and I was not bored in the story at all.   I was very moved in the descriptions of his very small daughter's reactions to him and how totally lost he was in trying to make it better.  I'm sure that is very true of  some of our service men and women who come home to find their little ones not even knowing who they are.  Virtual strangers trying to love on their children.  It must be quite the patient process to try to get to know one another.  The mystery in the story was revealed slowly and I have to admit I didn't guess it until the reveal.  I was a little surprised at the time line of the story.  Once Mike was back, it seemed to me that it was quite a while as layers of the mystery were revealed and everything was swirling around him but in fact it was only about a week.  That seemed a shock to me as some of the events that unfolded, in my mind, would take longer.  But that said, I love a story that draws out lots of emotions and this one did that for me.  I also really liked the questions at the back for book clubs.  They were thought provoking and are the kind that would make for great discussions.


Barbara H. said...

I don't think I have ever read this author. This sounds really good.

Faith said...

I loved this book when I read it!!! She' s one of MY fave authors too. And guess what Susanne?? One of my library books that was waiting for me an that I have to read soon because there's a waiting list for it is called Love Anthony and it's about a boy with autism...and i also have the book you sent!! And this is the first year in THREE years that I'm not working with a child on the Autism Spectrum!! LOL