Written By: Carol Cassella
Published By: Simon and Schuster March 4, 2014
Length: 352 pages
Source: Advanced Reader Copy via publisher in exchange for an honest review
An unidentified woman is hit by a car and abandoned along a rural highway in western Washington. She is life-flighted to a Seattle trauma center, where she’s admitted to the intensive care unit overseen by Dr. Charlotte Reese, who battles to keep her “Jane Doe” patient alive while a police investigation tries to discover who is responsible for this hit and run—a charge that could turn into murder if this gravely injured woman dies. Charlotte also senses a more covert battle brewing with the hospital’s legal department when they assign a professional guardian to stand in lieu of Jane’s unknown family and make critical decisions about her care. In frustration, Charlotte and her boyfriend Eric, a science journalist, begin their own efforts to find Jane’s family, veering across the professional boundary between physician and patient. As their lives become more entangled, the truths Charlotte learns will radically alter her own life more profoundly than they alter her patient’s. (Publisher)
Charlotte is an intense doctor fully committed to her patients in the ICU. She comes from a family of doctors, parents, brother and sister in law. She is also in a relationship with Eric, a writer. Their relationship has been going on for several years, but is not exactly defined.
It’s very hard to review this book without giving away the twists and surprises in Gemini. While much in this book is about the medical care the patient is given, it’s more about Jane Doe herself, how she got to this place. Charlotte is troubled that no one is searching for her, surely she has a family or friends that are missing her. Charlotte is drawn to Jane Doe in a personal way that she doesn’t often give to her patients. Gemini is also about Charlotte and Eric, their relationship, their challenges, and how in our lives everything changes, but some relationships don’t go away.
I loved the smaller relationships in this book, that of family, good ones and strained relationships. Eric’s parents divorce when he is about 12, and his whole life is never the same, his parents often battling about every detail in his life. Charlotte’s family is very close, and due to their shared medical careers they seem to almost talk in a language unto themselves. Jane Doe is a mix of these, a mother who left her and yet a grandfather that would have done anything to give her the life she aspires to. He doesn’t spoil her, but she always knows where home and support are.
This is the first book I’ve read by Carol Cassella, but it won’t be the last. Her first two books Oxygen and Healer have wonderful reviews, and are available in paperback , e book, and in audio. Carol is herself an anesthesiologist, which I find so fascinating as a back ground to writing novels with a medical theme. Please visit Carol’s website for more information.
I really enjoyed this book and I highly recommend it to those who enjoy a book with some mystery and doubt in it. There were twists in this book that were unconfirmed til almost the very end. Great writing and a story that kept me hanging on. I hope to share an interview with Carol Cassella very soon right here…so stay tuned.