Beat the Reaper

A Novel
Bazell, Josh (Book - 2009 )
Average Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5.
Beat the Reaper

Item Details

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.
Authors: Bazell, Josh
Title: Beat the reaper
a novel
Publisher: New York : Little, Brown, 2009
Edition: 1st ed
Characteristics: 310 p. ; 25 cm
Content Type: text
Media Type: unmediated
Carrier Type: volume
Notes: Sequel: Wild thing
ISBN: 0316032220
Branch Call Number: FIC BAZELL 2009
Statement of Responsibility: Josh Bazell
Subject Headings: Organized crime Fiction Assassins Fiction Physicians Fiction
Genre/Form: Black humor (Literature)
Suspense fiction
Topical Term: Organized crime
LCCN: 2008005030
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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.

Nov 29, 2010
  • derekwolfgram rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

Falling somewhere on the continuum between Christopher Moore's absurdist dementia and Chuck Palahniuk's outright derangement, Beat the Reaper is the story of ex-mobster Pietro Brnwa, cleverly re-christened Peter Brown through his participation in the witness protection program. Brown ends up going to med school and working as an emergency room doctor, and a very disturbing and entertaining series of events is set in motion when one of his fellow criminals recognizes him. Full of graphic violence, peculiar sex episodes, and an assortment of possibly-true-possibly-not strange medical facts, the story is a quick read for those who like their humor dark and their heroes less-than-perfect. Bazell's storytelling is not quite as polished as Carl Hiassen, Elmore Leonard, or other twisted thriller writers in a similar vein (and far raunchier than either of these two). However, he has written a very impressive debut novel, and I look forward to whatever he publishes next.

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