Verdict: An entertaining and thought-provoking read, BEING AND BECOMING builds suspense as a respected physician drifts further away from his research and medicine, and closer to espionage and revenge.
In this engaging tale of moral crisis, Dr. Arya Krish has the best of intentions…at first. A widely known researcher, medical doctor, and philanthropist – both in India and America – he runs the Beacon Medical Institute, a medical center and research facility. His goals are to give the best treatment to the sick patients in the Institute, give compassionate advice to patients’ family members, and use his money, influence, and resources to build medical and educational facilities in India to advance the country as “the sole superpower in Asia, and a staunch ally of the United States.”
To achieve these goals, Dr. Krish needs the cooperation of the powerful Alpha Corp., the major supplier of pharmaceuticals in the healthcare industry. Known for its shady business practices, Alpha Corp. was resurrected from the ashes of another company that may have been responsible for a car accident that killed Dr. Krish’s father and his co-workers many years ago.
As Dr. Krish encounters corruption at all levels (in India and America), he often reflects on whether or not the end justifies the means. This moral dilemma is the central theme of the book, which revisits the philosophical question repeatedly in escalating forms as he considers revenge against Alpha Corp.
The author, an infectious diseases physician, depicts struggles with medical ethics faced by those in the medical profession. This insider knowledge adds authenticity and relevance to the story. For the most part, this novella is highly articulate and descriptive (“in his peripheral vision he was aware of a man to his right, further down the hallway, hidden in the shadows between the beams of sunlight”). However, fluency is sometimes disrupted by awkward wording (“…the brush-ins we’ve had with them,” “…he has his father’s best interests in heart,” etc.) and frequent use of Arya Krish’s full name. Further development of secondary characters also may have improved the story.
An entertaining and thought-provoking read, BEING AND BECOMING builds suspense as a respected physician drifts further away from his research and medicine, and closer to espionage and revenge.