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Beat the Reaper

A Novel

Bazell, Josh

(Book - 2009)
Average Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5.
Beat the Reaper
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Dr. Peter Brown is an intern at Manhattan's worst hospital, with a talent for medicine, a shift from hell, and a past he'd prefer to keep hidden. Whether it's a blocked circumflex artery or a plan to land a massive malpractice suit, he knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men. Pietro "Bearclaw" Brnwna is a hitman for the mob, with a genius for violence, a well-earned fear of sharks, and an overly close relationship with the Federal Witness Relocation Program. More likely to leave a trail of dead gangsters than a molecule of evidence, he's the last person you want to see in your hospital room. Nicholas LoBrutto, aka Eddy Squillante, is Dr. Brown's new patient, with three months to live and a very strange idea: that Peter Brown and Pietro Brnwa might-just might-be the same person ...Now, with the mob, the government, and death itself descending on the hospital, Peter has to buy time and do whatever it takes to keep his patients, himself, and his last shot at redemption alive. To get through the next eight hours-and somehow beat the reaper.
Publisher: New York : Little, Brown, 2009
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 0316032220
9780316032223
Branch Call Number: FIC BAZELL 2009
Characteristics: 310 p. ; 25 cm

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If you’re looking for a new take on the crime novel, with equal parts humor and violence, Josh Bazell’s Dr. Peter Brown, aka Pietro “Bearclaw” Brnwna, is the way to go. How many other crime novelists can give you a wise-cracking ex-mobster, who became a doctor while in the witness protection prog... Read More »


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"When Dr. Peter Brown is mugged and it's the mugger who needs medical treatment, it comes as no big surprise that Brown is a former mob hit man now in the witness protection program. Between flashbacks that explain just how he got into killing for the mob (and why he left) and fascinating facts about medicine, Brown must make rounds, save his patients, find one that's gone missing, survive a needle stick, take just enough pills to keep him awake and functioning, and avoid getting killed himself. If you like medical dramas or high action, drop whatever you're doing and pick up a copy of this violent, funny, and highly enjoyable book -- stat. You can follow up with Wild Thing, the 2nd in the series." Thrillers and Suspense October 2014 newsletter http://www.libraryaware.com/996/NewsletterIssues/ViewIssue/1e433e8a-8eeb-417c-8ea3-00135a82169f?postId=d197a0aa-13c0-4533-9ae2-936764f2348f

My first time reading Bazell, laugh out loud funny reminds me a little of richard kadrey (sandman slim) very very good.

May 29, 2013
  • JCLAustinJ rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

It takes a lot for a book to make me squirm and this one did it. The blend of Medical Drama and witness protection Mafia hit man was thrilling and the wonderful, if somewhat blunt, narration by Pietro knocked my socks off.

Mar 03, 2013
  • elewep rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

This book is about revenge, being a doctor in the witness protection program and the mob. It is funny, fast paced and so good I read it in only a couple of days. I highly recommend this if you are looking for something light and entertaining.

I'm not sure how I stumbled across this title, or even why I read it. Mob hijinks and wiseguys are a far cry from my usual preferred subjects. And yet...I can't wait to read the next in the series! Pietro is charming, intelligent, and quite possibly the most brutally practical narrator I've ever encountered (witness the freezer scene toward the end of the story). Yeesh.

This tongue in cheek mobster page turner kept me chuckling all the way through.

Mar 24, 2012
  • kubux96 rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Heir apparent to Chuck Palahniuk. Entertaining and original.

Mar 18, 2012
  • deRougemont rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Great fun!

Mar 05, 2012
  • dcafk rated this: 2 stars out of 5.

Jack Reacher meets (Dr.) House.
Loved the footnotes and the medical info. (The author is a doctor.)

Jul 24, 2011
  • samuraibunny rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

This is probably the first non-school fiction that I've ever read that has footnotes. The footnotes are sometimes informative and always humorous. Just like the rest of the book, may I add. The book is split between the past and the present. I thought it was a little weird that it alternated, but it turned out to work well, especially in the beginning, when I was more interested in Pietro's action filled past, as opposed to his seemingly half-a$$ed attempt at being a doctor.

A warning to the squeamish (or not so, because I was quite disturbed as well), there is one VERY disturbing scene in this book. It should not deter you from reading this book, however, just a word of caution.

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