NURSES by Marcia Rose

NURSES

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A fast-paced, unabashedly soap-operatic tale of love and betrayal in a hectic Manhattan clinic, the latest from the author of Like Mother, Like Daughter (1994), etc. Marty Lamb, Director of Community Care Clinics at All Souls Women's Hospital, is a superwoman with more than just one proverbial skeleton in her closet: a long-forgotten affair with a doctor (Paul), for example, who's also just been hired at CCC and an insane husband who's been locked away for eight years. Marty's secrets seem safe, however, until nurses and doctors alike start receiving psychotic anonymous messages in plain gray envelopes: Someone knows about Marty's past, and whoever it is doesn't have her--or the Clinics'--best interests at heart. Meanwhile, Crystal Cole, head midwife at the Birthing Center, is popping up in unusual places, asking pushy questions and bad-mouthing patients; it's only a matter of time before Marty figures out she's a bad seed, but it may be too late to stop the tidal wave of trouble: Marty and Dr. Paul can't seem to reconnect; her mentor and best friend Dr. Zee gets AIDS; and friend Shayna, the daughter of a hubristic rabbi/leader of the cult-like Survivor Orthodox Jewish sect, is scheduled to be married off to a half-wit. As Marry gets closer to nailing Crystal, husband Owen (recently released from his asylum) wants her back; Shayna's father becomes deeply involved with the pro-lifers outside the clinic; and Paul seems to be enamored of a sophisticated administrator. It takes a deathly shooting and a showdown fire to bring all of Marty's issues to a head. In one fell swoop, though, all is solved--and true love, as it tends to, saves the day. Nary an insight into the gritty reality of clinic life, but plenty of strong-willed nurses for the '90s, and satisfying supply-room trysts.

Pub Date: Feb. 1st, 1996
Page count: 384pp
Publisher: Ballantine