Book Beginnings: Life Support

Life Support by Tess Gerritsen is the fourth book I’ll be reading in the RIP IV Challenge. According to the back cover this is ‘a quick, delightfully scary read‘, which fits in well with the RIP challenge criteria.

It begins:

A scalpel is a beautiful thing.

Dr Stanley Mackie had never noticed this before, but as he stood with head bowed beneath the OR lamps, he suddenly found himself marveling at how the light reflected with diamondlike brilliance off the blade. It was a work of art, that razor sharp lunula of stainless steel. So beautiful in fact, that he scarcely dared to pick it up for fear he would somehow tarnish its magic. In its surface he saw a rainbow of colors, light fractured to its purest elements. (Page 13)

This will be the first book by Tess Gerritsen that I’ve read. It’s been on my bookshelves for quite a while now and I have been wary of reading it in case it’s too gory for me. I didn’t buy it, it was a free book with the magazine Woman and Home, which I buy now and then. When I read the Introduction I was even less sure this book was for me as Tess Gerritsen wrote that she got the idea for the book whilst at medical school (she is a doctor), when she heard the professor say the words ‘human cannibalism’ in his lecture on Creutzfeld-Jakob disease, a viral infection of the brain.

So I put this book way down on my to-be-read books, but since then I’ve read several favourable reviews of other books by Gerritsen so I thought I’d try this one. I like the style of writing in this first paragraph and it does make me want to read on, so when I’ve finished one of my current reads I’m going to start Life Support. Let me know what you think if you’ve read it?

Book Beginnings on Friday is hosted by Katy at A Few More Pages.

10 thoughts on “Book Beginnings: Life Support

  1. Oh you lucky woman to have all of Tess Gerritsen’s books to look forward to!
    I have read almost everything of hers and am in a long queue of readers for her most recent Rizzoli and Isles book.
    She is one of the most gripping writers I know and I haven’t read a bad book by her yet plus although she can be a bit gory she never goes over the top into something really nasty.
    Hope you enjoy it.


  2. LizF is right, she can be a be gory… I think it perhaps comes of wanting explain surgical procedures in minute detail. But those bits could be skipped. The stories themselves are completely gripping and I find once I’ve started one I can’t put it down. This one I haven’t read but I have read four of the Rizzoli and Isles books and love them. I’ll be really interested to hear what this stand-alone is like as it sounds intriguing.


  3. I love the show Rizzoli and Isles and have been wanting to read that series. It doesn’t sound like this one is part of that series, but probably will have many of the same qualities. I was surprised that I wasn’t too squeamish about the autopsies on that show…so reading about it shouldn’t do too much….LOL

    Thanks for sharing.



  4. That is such a beautiful description of a usually inane object. I hope it isn’t too gory for you – I, too, rarely go for gruesome books on purpose, but what with this opening I’d be more than keen to give it a go for a change! 🙂


  5. Very descriptive beginning, with a touch of creepiness (scalpels cut people open, and this character seems unnaturally fascinated by it, even if he is a doctor LOL).

    Thanks for participating in Book Beginnings!


  6. I avoided Gerritsen’s books for years because I thought they would be too gory for me. Then I read one and really enjoyed it. Maybe it’s because I worked in hospitals and doctors’ offices for many years, but I find I can depersonalize medical procedures and bloody scenes enough to be okay with them.


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