As chair of the Department of Life Sciences at one of Boston’s top research universities, Brad Parker has his hands full when $20,000 is reported missing from the department’s discretionary funds. That problem pales in comparison to what comes next: the news that a female graduate student working on important cancer research was drugged and sexually assaulted, and the likely perpetrator is her professor. As gossip spreads throughout the university, a campus police detective, Karen Richmond, is assigned to work with Brad on bringing the scandalous case within his department to a quick conclusion.
What seems straightforward initially in NONDISCLOSURE: A Medical Thriller becomes much more complicated as the duo discovers details about the professor and other school administrators in some strange plot twists. Before long, their jobs at the university are in jeopardy—and eventually their lives—as they get closer to digging up the truth from the past that connects to the present.
Author Geoffrey M Cooper, a retired scientist and academic administrator, uses medical research and the academic community as vital components in telling this compelling story. Each chapter flows smoothly into the next while laying the groundwork for what’s to come. No red herrings or incongruous conclusions muddy the water here as this book is carefully plotted and characters are well-developed in an engrossing tale with a satisfying ending.
Set in an academic community of medical researchers, NONDISCLOSURE contains easily understandable language and physical descriptions of characters and settings that most readers will appreciate. The romance between Brad and Karen is believable and intimate without being explicit. Likewise, the sexual assault is explained in precise terms without salacious details. Dialogue is natural and balanced with narrative, and occasional surprises that keep the story an enjoyable read.
NONDISCLOSURE’s only weakness lies in providing clues to the perpetrator’s true identity too early in the story. Careful readers will know “who-done-it” within a few chapters, which turns the book into a “how-done-it” or “why-done-it.” Even so, this thriller deserves a cover-to-cover read for its excellent plotting and characterization.
NONDISCLOSURE: A Medical Thriller is an intriguing and meticulously plotted medical thriller that involves the inner workings at a top research university where scandal threatens to taint its important new discovery.
~Carol Michaels for IndieReader