A good book has no ending. ~ R.D. Cumming

Sunday, September 26, 2010

More Than It Hurts You

Product DetailsMore Than It Hurts You by Darin Strauss

Josh Goldin has everything a man could want - a great job, a beautiful wife and a not-quite-two year old son, Zack. Everything changes one day when Josh receives an emergency phone call at work, asking him to meet his wife at the hospital. The doctor in charge of Pediatrics ICU, Dr. Darlene Stokes, suspects that this may be more than just an "incident". Her suspicions only increase when the child is brought in again on another occasion...with the same issues. Although the tests that the doctors run show nothing wrong with Zack, Darlene fights to draw attention to the mother, all the while drawing negative attention towards herself as she makes a potential diagnosis that no one wants to hear: Munchausen syndrome by proxy; in other words, a mother intentionally injuring her child.

It is a big risk to tackle a subject so controversial as MSBP, and unfortunately I felt the author fell short in his delivery. Although I like the concept of the story, I think it could have been better developed. I didn't find that I really connected with any of the characters and so I don't think the book impacted me the way it could (and maybe should) have. Perhaps I am simply biased, being a huge Jodi Picoult fan (for those of you who are unfamiliar with her, controversial subjects are her forte), because once I finished the novel, I couldn't help but think WWJD (What Would Jodi Do?).This was in no way a bad novel - I would hate to give that impression - I simply feel that the subject wasn't explored as thoroughly or deeply as it could have been.

Darin Strauss has written a couple of other novels ("Chang & Eng", "The Real McCoy"), so although I wasn't a huge fan of this one I wouldn't mind giving the others a shot to see if they are written differently. Unfortunately this novel isn't one that I would jump to recommend but, nonetheless, I'm glad to have had the opportunity to read it.

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