The Surgeon’s Wife


A New Orleans aristocrat and doctor, Clayton Otherson, is an aging national leader in the field of trauma surgery who begins to injure patients with his unacceptable technical and judgmental mistakes. Otherson’s younger partner, Mike Boudreaux, whom he trained and mentored, must discipline him. Otherson resents constrains and criticisms and denies his impairment. Boudreaux complicates his management by falling in love with Otherson’s beautiful wife, Catherine. Otherson’s wrath threatens violence as Boudreaux and Catherine shape their love struggling for respect in the contempt of New Orleans’ society. A short-list finalist in the 2010 William Faulkner-William Wisdom Creative Writing Competition.
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Human nature has always been fascinating to me. What makes people do the things that they do? This is the type of issue that William H. Coles explores in his book The Surgeon's Wife.
Clayton Otherson is a surgeon in New Orleans who mainly does bariatric surgery. He's been making a few mistakes lately, though, forcing Mike Boudreaux to act in his capacity as Chief of Service. Dr. Otherson is a very prominent surgeon who is a forerunner in obesity surgery; he also taught and mentored Dr. Boudreaux. That makes it hard for Mike to make any decisions that might jeopardize Dr. Otherson's career. Then there is Catherine, Clayton's wife. Catherine has always been a strong woman and very active in the community. Now, though, Clayton seems to be coming unglued, and Catherine is unhappy in her marriage. Will Mike make the hard decision that ends Clayton's career? How will Clayton react if the only thing he has ever known is taken away from him? Will Catherine stick it out in her marriage for better times? Or will she walk away?
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40 reviews for The Surgeon’s Wife

  1. Dianne Woodman

    The Surgeon’s Wife is split into three parts. Vivid illustrations on the book cover and also preceding the text for each part perfectly complement this engaging story. The book is told from multiple viewpoints which provides valuable insight into the feelings, perceptions, and motives of each of the pertinent characters in the story, and how they are affected by the circumstances in which they find themselves.

    Mike Boudreaux is the chief of surgery at a prominent hospital in New Orleans, and he is called upon to make tough decisions about his partner, Clayton Otherson, who is making life-threatening mistakes in surgery. Mike owes the success of his career to Clayton and wants to help his colleague and friend, a distinguished and influential bariatric surgeon, avoid suspension by the hospital operating room committee. Mike can impact decisions made by the committee since he is the chair, and Clayton believes that Mike should make any complaints about his competency as a surgeon go away. However, the safety of patients is Mike’s top priority. When the committee puts some restrictions in place that affect Clayton in his surgeries of obese patients, this action puts up barriers in Mike and Clayton’s friendship.

    As Clayton’s ability on whether or not he is a component surgeon continues to be scrutinized by his colleagues, it not only begins to take an emotional toll on his mental health but it also puts his marriage in jeopardy. Catherine, Clayton’s wife, finds herself attracted to Mike, and when family life becomes unbearable, she turns to him for help and support. Things become even more complicated when Mike and Catherine begin having an affair. Will this affair and Clayton’s struggling career destroy his marriage and friendship with Mike? Things come to a head in a final confrontation that will change the lives of everyone involved forever.

    William H. Coles does an excellent job of immersing readers into the fictional world of where the story takes place. The story brings out the contentious debates that can arise between hospital staff members as to whether economic interests are more important than patient care. An underlying theme of the story deals with the psychological and emotional effects on a martial relationship that is in a crisis mode along with the subsequent strain on the offspring caught in the middle. There is some profanity in the book, but it fits with the personalities of the characters.

  2. Jane Finch

    The Surgeon’s Wife by William H Coles delves into the life of elite and respected surgeons at a well-respected hospital in New Orleans. Mike Boudreaux is the chief of surgery and dedicated to his work, often to the detriment of his social life. Mike is put in a difficult position when another prominent surgeon, Clayton Otherson, comes under scrutiny for mistakes during surgery. Mike is conflicted by loyalty to Clayton and his desire to do what is right. He also harbours concerns about Clayton’s speciality of treating obese patients, when Mike feels other treatments and approaches are being ignored. Complications arise when Mike finds himself falling in love with Clayton’s neglected wife, Catherine.

    The author, William H Coles, would appear to have a clear knowledge and understanding of the procedures and internal conflicts of a high-end hospital, which makes the story authentic and gives it credibility. The story starts well with fast-paced and tense action, although it loses its impetus somewhat and continues at a more sedate pace. The author examines the issues behind the actions of the main protagonists well, and the characters are solidly developed and believable, in particular the attitudes of some of the surgeons who tend to have a superior and uncompromising view, not least of which is Clayton Otherson. The introduction of the romance with Clayton’s wife was an unexpected twist. The story holds interest, but could benefit from more intrigue and a few twists and turns to keep the reader alert. Otherwise, a pleasant read.

  3. Deborah Lloyd

    The charming city of New Orleans as well as a varied cast of interesting characters are the main components of this intriguing novel. Mike Boudreaux has been the Chief of Surgery for four years, and he is faced with the challenging task of dealing with his favored professor and mentor, Clayton Otherson. Dr. Otherson is performing many unnecessary and dangerous surgeries for obese people, and his declining abilities have resulted in physical damage in several cases. How the hospital staff should deal with this results in conflict. Mike’s relationship with Rosemary Dayside has ended, and a physical attraction to Clayton’s wife, Catherine, has blossomed. Clayton and Catherine’s daughter also become entangled in her parents’ troubled marriage, and in her mother’s new relationship. In The Surgeon’s Wife by William H. Coles, the professional and personal lives of Mike and Clayton collide, and how it will end remains a mystery until the last chapter.

    One of the most fascinating aspects of this story is the hierarchy that exists in surgical departments in large teaching hospitals. Additionally, the societal structure within the wealthier classes of New Orleans is also revealed, within the context of a compelling story. Author William H. Coles has written an engaging novel, encompassing several main themes. Mr. Coles’ writing style is concise and easy to follow. The drawings that appear on the cover and at the beginning of each section are as intriguing as the plot. Not only do they capture the essence of the book, they also capture the essence of New Orleans. This novel is certainly an enjoyable read!

  4. Janelle Alex, Ph.D.

    A refreshing read, The Surgeon’s Wife takes readers on a fictional journey that will keep them intrigued from the beginning. William H. Coles’ dramatic tale is based around the lives of two prominent surgeons and one woman. The issues that arise in The Surgeon’s Wife start off with one of the main characters, Clayton Otherson, making a major mistake during surgery. His former student and the current chair of the OR committee, Mike Boudreaux, tries to protect his mentor, but ethically and professionally he knows he must protect the patients. Eventually, a love triangle comes into play and Mike and Catherine Otherson, Clayton’s wife, become lovers. With numerous challenges facing both the Othersons and Mike, The Surgeon’s Wife will keep readers on tenterhooks from start to finish.

    For the most part, William H. Coles’ story progresses at a cadence that feels smooth and interesting. The romantic relationship between Mike and Catherine jumps ahead pretty quickly – but not until nearly halfway through the book – and with little anticipation of it earlier in the plot. But, overall, The Surgeon’s Wife is so intriguing that this minor issue remains just that – a minor issue. Coles makes the story more realistic by allowing some patients to actually die even after having given readers a chance to like them. He also displays examples of doctors trying to stick together and protect one of their own, even at the risk of patients’ lives. Sexism is still yet another aspect fluidly blended into The Surgeon’s Wife, from how doctors’ wives are often treated to how female surgeons are treated. William H. Coles’ The Surgeon’s Wife is filled with an in-depth plot, powerful characters, and a lot of fascinating different topics that could be proposed for discussion via a book club or with friends. The Surgeon’s Wife is a great read and one I recommend.

  5. Viga Boland

    In William H. Coles’ novel, The Surgeon’s Wife, Catherine is the lovely but neglected and unappreciated wife of the lauded Dr. Otherson. When Dr. Otherson, a specialist in bariatric surgery, comes under fire for both his procedural competence, and his true motivation for performing surgery on patients only mildly obese, his world and his marriage to Catherine start to fall apart. Unfortunately for her, she finds solace and love in the arms of Michael, once Otherson’s student, but now his superior. What follows for Catherine and her daughter Melissa is heartache, chaos and, ultimately, violence, while Michael battles with his loyalty to his mentor, his duty to those patients who have put their trust in Otherson’s skills, and his love for Catherine.

    Just as he did in his more recent novel, McDowell, William H. Coles enjoys, as did Shakespeare, exploring and exploiting the concept of the “tragic flaw”, the one characteristic that causes a hero to come undone. And Coles does this so well. It’s fascinating to watch how Dr. Otherson, at the top of his field when the story opens, hits bottom by the time the story closes, thanks to his one, maybe even several, tragic flaws. One of the beauties of reading books or short stories by William H. Coles is his remarkable ability to reveal characters through dialogue. He relies very little on any other of the usual devices writers use. The result of his approach is a sense of fulfillment in readers: they feel this author knows they are intelligent enough to draw their own conclusions about the people in his story. Ultimately, this consistent and superb use of dialogue makes The Surgeon’s Wife a quick, engrossing and satisfying read. Enjoy.

  6. Ann Neville

    The Surgeon’s Wife by William H. Coles follows Clayton Otherson, a senior surgeon, as he makes life-threatening mistakes during Bariatric surgery in a New Orleans’ hospital. Mike Boudreaux, the chief of surgery, must discipline Otherson, his partner, colleague, mentor and friend. Even though Mike knows he must take action, he feels conflicted because he owes his education and his career success to Otherson. But when a patient dies from post-operative complications, there is no option but suspension. Otherson turns angry and vindictive, especially when his wife, Catherine, turns to Mike for help and support. Otherson is consumed with revenge and threatens violence. The consequences of the psychological and emotional effects on Catherine and Otherson’s marriage, on their daughter, Mellissa, and on Mike are dramatic and disastrous.
    I found The Surgeon’s Wife by William H. Coles an interesting and fascinating read on several levels. Coles skilfully articulates the moral dilemma faced by doctors regarding Bariatric surgery (gastric bypass surgery) and its consequences for patients. The issue of financial gain over patient safety is also well presented, along with the conflict between personal values and corporate economic survival. The psychological and emotional journeys of all the main characters, Otherson, his wife and daughter, and Mike, are intriguing and compelling, while the dramatic ending is completely shocking and, in one aspect, unexpected. Fortunately, the denouement offers an inkling of hope for the future. If a reader is looking for drama in a surgical setting, I recommend this well-written book, The Surgeon’s Wife by William H. Coles.

  7. D. Donovan, Senior Reviewer, Midwest Book Review

    Set against the backdrop of New Orleans society and its medical community, The Surgeon’s Wife is the story of two physicians: one an aging aristocrat and surgeon, Clayton Otherson, who begins to injure patients as his skills and mental abilities decline; the other younger partner Mike Boudreaux, who is placed in the bad position of having to point out these errors and discipline his own mentor.One doesn’t expect romance to further complicate a professional relationship already standing on shaky ground; but when Mike falls in love with Clayton’s young, beautiful wife, the trouble between them threatens to spill over into the personal and professional lives of everyone involved.It’s difficult to imagine that a short novella could capture so many facets: New Orleans culture and society, the dilemmas faced by a compassionate younger doctor and his increasingly impaired mentor, and the underlying desire for love that creates ethical and moral conflicts; but The Surgeon’s Wife deftly weaves these disparate threads of interest into a story line that is as thought-provoking as it is entertaining.Readers with a special affection for romances which spring from unusual circumstances will relish the attention to detail exploring how a colleague’s wife becomes tempting: “She climbed up the stage stairs gracefully, with the controlled steps of an athlete, and walked to the podium. For the first time ever, he found her striking. She knew her worth as a woman. He’d not been around her enough over the years, when her role had been always as a hostess or as Clayton’s devoted companion, to see it before. But here, on this stage, presenting to this group of arrogant cynics, her confidence was obvious and appealing.”William H. Coles takes the time to explore and develop this process, and this care shows well in a production that moves beyond professional boundaries and how they are overstepped into the lives of two compassionate individuals who find in each other an unexpected connection.As events give rise to some unexpected scenarios, readers are in for a treat because what is anticipated to be a set course of love evolves into something quite different.While the story’s unexpected conclusion would seem to belay the evolutionary direction of the rest of the novella, the result is a satisfying turn of events that will keep readers guessing right up to the end in a story recommended for romance readers who want the added attraction of professional and ethical conundrums added to the mix.

  8. read 40 more reviews from Indie Book Reviews

    – “The Surgeon’s Wife” by William H. Coles a literary drama with romantic and medical elements and one of the most original and most addicting novels (novellas) I’ve read in a long time! I was completely interested from the very beginning pages where Coles wastes no time thrusting us into the world of high-stakes world of surgery and introducing us to the main characters including Mike and Clayton whose tumultuous relationship will shape the events of this riveting book. Loved the author’s use of description of the medical ins- and outs and ‘behind the scenes’ action… the drama there provides a great, realistic backdrop for the personal/romantic dramas… perfect for this type of novel, and we really feel like we are there. The writing is clear and fast paced, solid literary prose that has powerful, solid word choices that truly bring this memorable story to life. A fast read with more than one shocking (and sad) twist. Highly recommend! (5 stars)

    – Another amazing read by William H. Coles! “The Surgeon’s Wife” is an excellent novella that captured my attention from the first and never once let it go. Each scene was authentic, impressively detailed, and well written.  The descriptions were very good and it’s obvious the author knows the medical field well (as is also indicated in his impressive bio!). The pacing was really quick, as was the dialogue. Most of the actual ‘action” happens in part 3, but there’s lots of character drama leading up to it. Definitely a mesmerizing story that kept me turning the pages quickly. I read it in one night and think this might actually be my favorite William Coles book so far (And I’ve read 4). It had great interweaving plotlines, from suicide to obese surgery to infidelity and romance… the editing was almost flawless and the story was a wild ride till the end… in a good way! Can’t wait to read more from him. Recommend for fans of literary drama. (5 stars)

    – Wow, I really loved this book. I thought it was just beautifully written and kept my attention the whole way through. There is some setting up the stage of action on the beginning, and we get to meet the main characters, and some supporting cast who come into the mix. I really like Catherine and Rosie and feel bad for them and their situations especially with Mike. Mike is dynamic and we relate to him, even though he is flawed, (as is Clayton.) He tries to do the right thing and I like that. The characters are all good, some more richly detailed than others, and there are some surprising turn of events I didn’t see coming. It is a quick read, one I finished in the course of an evening but there is a ton of story and emotion here. I was genuinely surprised at a few things that happened, and thought the tension and narrative was great. I will be looking forward to reading more books from William H. Coles soon. Happy he has so many! Recommend reading for fans of literary novellas with a darker, complex twist. (5 stars)

    – Warning – when starting “The Surgeon’s Wife” make sure you don’t have anywhere you need to be or anything you need to do because you won’t want to stop reading until you’ve finished it all!! Trust me on this! The book starts off with an enticing, dramatic beginning that sets the groundwork for the tension with Dr. Mike Boudreaux and his ‘mentor’ Dr Clayton Otherson right off the bat and just keeps going until the shocking, climactic showdown at the end. The characters of Mike, Clay, Catherine, Rosie, Mellissa (and the others) were genuine and believable, and I think what I liked the most about this book was just the overall feel the author managed to create where it felt intimate, like we are really there in their heads as this story unfolds, feeling the things they are feeling and seeing and experiencing. Like we are there in the OR or the Dr’s meetings. Loved the unpredictability, and the fact that this wasn’t just a cliché ‘love’ story. This went much deeper than that, and I was truly impressed with the author’s literary skills and medical knowledge.  Although it’s a fairly mild book in terms of content and language, it is probably most suitable for adults. Recommend. (5 stars)

    – First, I have to say that I don’t normally read books that are novellas or shorter books as I generally prefer to lose myself in longer, more epic novels. But I’ve read and enjoyed several other books by William H. Coles so I knew he could tell a good story and that I’d enjoy myself.  Well I was not in the least bit disappointed!  I loved that whole opening scene and it sets the mood perfectly. This has the elements of a ‘romantic’ story, but it is also a drama, and at times, a tragedy, combined with real – life medical situations and scenes. Very, very cool, and the writing is stellar. That ending is a killer too! Wish there was more to come, but I think that we are supposed to be left that way – it is more of an impact. Recommend for older teens and adults. (5 stars)

    – I’m a big romance reader, and I knew that this book had some but that it wasn’t the focus or a ‘traditional romance’. And that is all true… this is like an authentic ‘life story’ that includes the good, bad, and ugly… and of course that means some romantic entanglements as well! This was a terrific book and very impressive the way Coles combines so many great elements, from the New Orleans background (hence the cover), to the surgeries, to the marital and professional scandals, death and love… so much!! The title comes from the fact that one of the main characters is a surgeon, and his wife plays a prominent role in the drama involving his protegee and colleague. The story transitions well from various characters and is divided into 3 distinct parts. And it all comes together to make a surprising ending that literally made me gasp out loud. I didn’t put my Kindle down even one time while reading this book… a very good read that I’d recommend even to those who don’t normally read this sort of thing…try it, you’ll be pleasantly surprised! (4-5 stars)

    – This book by William H. Coles was so much more than just a simple medical/romance story to me. The writing is so good… powerful literary prose and great character conflict and development that I really wasn’t expecting. And I’m not easily impressed. I did feel that perhaps the beginning was a bit rushed and took too long to get to the real inciting incident (with Catherine and Mike) especially for such a short book. Seemed to be a bit too much “setting up” of all the various conflicts and it almost seemed like it lost focus (like with the prostitute girl- didn’t add to the plot much). The pacing was great, however, there were some times that it felt a bit too ‘telling’. Beautiful prose, yes, but there is such thing as too much of a good thing, and this was more toward the end – like the author just wanted to finish it up. Overall the plot had more depth and complexity than I anticipated, and the ending truly shocked me. Certainly worth a read, and I’m interested in reading more from William Coles in the near future. (4 stars)

    – I have to admit that I’m a bit mixed-feelings on this book, “The Surgeon’s Wife” by William H. Coles. On one hand it is brilliantly original and excellently written. But I felt it lacked a certain tension or ‘high stakes’… even though all the ingredients were there, I just couldn’t feel the emotional connection I wanted to. I was trying to make the connection, and for me when it happened it seemed almost too simple, or glossed over. Just felt like it needed more explanation or depth. Was a good story, but the ending was frustrating also. I like more of a concrete ending and want to know if they ended up together or not. But there were so many great parts and I didn’t want to stop reading it. So not perfect, but I can tell this author knows how to write, so I’m looking forward to reading more of his books soon. (3.5 stars)

    – “The Surgeon’s Wife” packs a whole lotta drama for its shorter length, and is an intelligent, well-written story that certainly held on to my attention. I was almost disappointed when it was over, but the ending was like, “whoa” and I wish there was more! It didn’t end how I thought it would, but in a way it’s fitting how it all comes full circle in a way. I did very much enjoy the scenery and how the author writes and his detailed descriptions and dialogue of the characters that really gives great authenticity to the ‘medical drama’ angle. Was pretty cool to be part of it from the perspective of a doctor, and see what they go through. It wasn’t predictable, at all, and I appreciated the originality, especially for being in a genre where so many books seem the same. This one had a fresh, distinctive flavor to it. Recommend. (4 stars)

    – “The Surgeon’s Wife” by William H Coles is a really good book. Very interesting…maybe too interesting, as at times I almost felt a little lost as to what exactly was going on. It was very complex and with interweaving plotlines with lots of twists and turns. All very good things for keeping me at the edge of my seat and totally in tuned to the book, but there were some places where I had to go back a re-read what had just happened because I felt confused. LOL but it might have been me. It was so good that I might have just been reading too fast! But it was unpredictable and different than anything else I’ve read in a long time, if ever. Yeah in a way it’s a romance story, and you might think those are a dime a dozen. But it is the unique medical background and complex subplots and flawed, interesting characters that make this a remarkable and original treat. I’ve read three other books by Coles as well and they have all been excellent. Recommend. (4-5 stars)

    – Flawless. I don’t give out effusive praise to just any book, and I usually try to point out the weaknesses as well as the strengths. As far as weaknesses goes, in my opinion the only one was that it was over too soon for my liking! I wish this book was about twice as long, but I know it wouldn’t have worked that way, and it didn’t need to be longer. For the strengths, well, the list is long. It’s smartly and beautifully-written, yet not overdone. I thoroughly enjoyed the accurate world-building (of the medical/doctor experience), and all the interesting characters who came into the mix. Some are more fully developed than others, but all had authentic personalities. That ending had my eyes popping open wide, ha! Great voice and I was impressed with the editing for the most part… if there are any mistakes they are very minor. Great job. (5 stars)

    – I’ve read a lot of literary drama, and I’ve read a lot of romance, and even medical-based novels (or books featuring doctors or hospitals, etc…). But I’m hard pressed to remember one that was not only crazy intense and gripping, but so well written, some parts almost make me feel like I’m right there in the story with Mike, Clayton and Catherine and everyone else. This is a dark, intelligent story that is both easy and entertaining to read, yet deeply intense at the same time. I thought the story to be extremely well-rounded with different topics, from drama in surgery, to marital affairs, to family strife and professional crisis, and the characters are nicely fleshed out (no cliché stock characters here!). Warning, this novel is dark and has its twisted moments. It can be downright shocking. But it is a powerful read, one with an excellent payoff at the end. I would certainly recommend “The Surgeon’s Wife” for fans of literary fiction. (5 stars)

    – “The Surgeon’s Wife” by William H. Coles is an intense and compelling page turner– 100%. It was different from what I normally read, but it sounded good and I liked the opening sample so I’d thought I’d give it a shot. Well it did not disappoint, and I got actual chills several times. I thought the writing was surprisingly strong, and the plot was evenly- paced with short chapters (scenes?) that kept me on my toes. I thought Mike and Clayton were great characters and things that happened were completely unpredictable yet totally realistic (not contrived). The descriptions and actions seemed so real, at times I almost forgot I was reading a novel. It was tough to read at some parts, only because the writing felt so real it was super unsettling. But I’m glad I read it and I can’t really think of other authors or books I would compare it to, just solid writing, great characters and a unique plot. I have another book by Coles on my Kindle and I really excited to read it now. (4-5 stars)

    – Amazing. Disturbing. Haunting. This is a book that I won’t easily or soon forget. It and the author William H. Coles has branded a part of my psyche with his dark and gripping and evocative tale unlike anything I’ve read. I admit I’m fond of reading about characters who are flawed or have issues, or are disturbed (they are just so interesting!) and once again Mr. Coles did a wonderful job of bringing the drama to some complex and engaging characters. I liked that it wasn’t like every other ‘medical/romance’ story out there, and at times had a more surreal, literary bent that goes deeper and explored more of the human psyche and condition. Almost philosophical at times, yet highly readable. Liked the journal entry where we see more of Clayton’s character and his feelings for Catherine – gave him more depth, I think. Some proofing errors but nothing too awful. I’d definitely be interested in reading more from this author to see what other tricks he has up his sleeve. Highly recommend. (4-5 stars)

    – “The Surgeon’s Wife” is very different from the books I’ve been reading lately. This book will get inside your head and probably make you angry a few times, and maybe even sadden or horrify you with how dark people can be. There is no “being a bystander” in this novel…Coles pulls you into the intense, high-stakes world of medicine and surgery and romantic complications that rival only the professional ones and won’t let you escape.  This is a book that genuinely kept my interest, and after I put it down (once – to eat dinner) I was eager to resume where I’d left off. A must-read for fans of literary drama, with a romantic and medical element. Some minor language/violence – nothing gratuitous (4 stars)

    – Okay, wow, I loved this book! I was pulled in from the opening pages and couldn’t put it down until I’d reached the end! I loved that although this was a pretty common theme for a drama story (romantic infidelity, personal/professional conflict) it was so original in the setting and the characters, it was a real breath of fresh air! Also, I loved how many twists and turns there were, and that I wasn’t able to figure out how it was all going to work out until the end.  Mike is a flawed, yet sympathetic lead and even though I wasn’t a fan of Catherine (like Rosie better) I think Catherine’s storyline seemed straggly anticlimactic (no spoliers). Like what happens to her at the end is barely mentioned – strange. Anyways, it is written very well, both stylistically and in tone than other books, and with more accurate detailing and quick energy than I’ve read in this genre lately. Very impressive. Now I’m really a fan of William Coles’ books! (5 stars)

    – Excellent writing, intriguing plot, vivid details, and charmingly original characters. “The Surgeon’s Wife” by William H. Coles is an intoxicating, fast-paced literary delight that will suck you into the story before you know it! I’d planned on only reading a few chapters for the night, but ended up reading all of it…. and yeah, try sleeping after that! Haha.  It was very easy to fall into, and my curiosity was piqued right away with the drama (and strained relationship) with Mike and his mentor Clayton, and we can tell right away that he has a connection with Clayton’s wife, Catherine (ergo the book title). Mike is a likable protagonist (but we see other characters’ POVS and stories as well) and I appreciate the fact that his actions make sense, even if we don’t always agree…(I see this all too often where I’m shaking my head at the MC wondering what they are thinking and it seems contrived for the sake of drama) There was none of that here and it was intelligently constructed in a way that kept me intrigued. This book is on the shorter side, so it’s a pretty quick read, but certainly memorable and makes an impact. (4 stars)

    – “The Surgeon’s Wife” by William Coles is equal parts beautiful and depressing.  Unnerving and comforting. Familiar, yet original. I liked how Mr. Coles was able to so vividly describe the characters and scenery (specifically in the medical world and the detailing on that)—- felt very authentic and this gave great credibility to the story as it all sounded and felt very natural. I felt like I was really inside the story, and it wasn’t boring at all, but most of the real crazy action happens in part 3, towards the end of the book. Great tension, and I was actually really happy with the ending as well. Could use a little better proofreading but nothing that ruined the overall experience for me at all.  I look forward to reading other books from Mr. Coles soon. (4 stars)

    – For me, “The Surgeon’s Wife” had many of the necessary ingredients to be a hit for me, but something left me feeling sort of flat about the whole thing. Almost like the most pivotal scenes were too rushed, and there were some scenes and characters (and some chit chat, filler dialogue) that added nothing.  Even the scene that was supposed to be dramatic with some ‘deaths’ left me feeling a bit detached and removed from the action. But as the storylines started to mesh together, I realized just how well-constructed this story was, and done in a way that puts a new spin on a traditional romance story. The characters were unique in their own right, and believable to a point. Overall I can say that I think it’s an interesting story, but the execution just didn’t resonate with me in a way that I’d hope for. (4 stars).

    – An interesting and unique twist on a typical ‘romance story’  THE SURGEON’S WIFE by William H. Coles grabbed me from the opening pages and held me hostage until the jaw-dropping ending! (What the heck?!)  I love it when a book can totally suck me in like that, and it was never predictable of boring. I won’t re-hash the plot, but this is definitely an intelligent complex, character-driven drama with many layers that will satisfy almost any reader looking for an incredibly well-written book that takes you on a mind-bending and heart wrenching journey. Great characters, narrative, and brisk dialogue. You can tell that the author is very astute when it comes to exploring the nuances of relationships with doctors and the stuff they deal with and how it affects their personal lives. How can it not? Can’t wait to get started on Mr. Coles’ next book. I’ve read several already and they have all been really good. (5 stars)

    – I really liked “The Surgeon’s Wife” by W.H. Coles, and read it from beginning to end in one night! It was well-written and easy to read. I liked the characters of Mike and Catherine (and Rosie and Clay even…) and was caught up in their bizarre drama. I’ve never read a book that was so medically-based as this one was and it added a great flavor. The narrative flowed well and it kept me guessing right up until the end. I’m happy that it wasn’t predictable and cliché like so many stories in this genre are these days. I was genuinely shocked by the ending and wished there was more! A must read for fans of the literary genre. (4 stars)

    – I found myself wavering around while reading “The Surgeon’s Wife” by William H. Coles. At first I was immediately grabbed into the story, and became immersed in the intense and dramatic world building and plot development. But there were times I felt the story wasn’t as focused as I’d like, with some conversations and scenes maybe weren’t necessary and perhaps could have been eliminated to tighten the storyline some. But at the same time, the pacing was fast (liked the shorter chapters) and there were some intricate plot twists and some definitely crazy developments toward the end. It felt fresh and unpredictable, always a nice experience. Good writing, but could use some light editing. (3-4 stars)

    – Another riveting character drama from William Coles that entertained and challenged my psyche! I was so pleased while reading this book how Coles took real chances with his characters and stepped outside the standard norms in creating his ‘villains’ and ‘victims’… they aren’t good or bad, they are real and human and flawed and very relatable. These characters are fleshed out and real (even for not being ‘real’). The unexpected twists and turns kept me on my toes and reading way later than I intended to during a work week. But who needs (or can) sleep when you’ve got a great story on your hands? Although it felt a bit abrupt, the ending was satisfying and surprising—A definite plus in my opinion. All in all a very good read that will appeal to fans of romance, drama, medical fiction, literary fiction. (5 stars)

    – Woah… what an insane book! Holy bananas!! Okay, I don’t even know where to begin because so much happens and I don’t want to give anything away… “The Surgeon’s Wife” by author William H. Coles is one of the most original and just flat out interesting literary novellas I’ve ever read. I liked it for so many different reasons, first the writing was outstanding – very confident and authentic (especially in terms of the medical background). The strong word choice and fluid prose makes it a very easy book to sink into. There are enough descriptions where you can picture everything perfectly, but not so much that it bogs down the pacing. I wish I knew what the characters looked like better though, because some of them I had hard time imagining them and I like to do that. I liked that there were things I haven’t seen in other books like this before and it just felt more “intelligent” than others I’ve read. Even though it’s not a ‘happy’ book, it is real and raw and speaks to the heart. I feel like this would actually make a cool movie. Highly recommend. (5 stars)

    – I was hooked from the first pages of “The Surgeon’s Wife” and my interest never faded for a moment! I loved the creative and strong characters and plots that continued to build and shock and surprise. Just when you think you know what’s happening, something comes along to throw a wrench in it. This is good because I HATE books that are super predictable. And this one isn’t at all. Although there are some familiar themes and tropes at play, the author brings a fresh voice and makes it all his own. I’ve read a ton of lit fiction over the years so I’m rarely surprised by anything anymore but I can say that this author managed to do it. I appreciated the brisk pace and the descriptive details that really brought the story to life. Will be interested in seeing other books by this author. Recommend for anyone (adults) who enjoy a well-written, character-driven novel with unexpected twists. (4-5 stars)

    – I really liked this book by William H. Coles, and honestly the more time that passes, the more I think I like it… I finished last week, but it is really sticking with me for some reason, and I think I’ll re-read it again soon. I like that it isn’t too long, but you sure experience a lot in this shorter book.  “The Surgeon’s Wife” stands out as having more “character” and “depth” than most novellas I’ve read. It was totally unpredictable and not at all contrived. The writing is very good and natural sounding…. I did notice some proofing errors, but nothing that diminished my enjoyment any. The ending had my jaw on the floor and I was hoping there is a sequel in the works… is there?? I hope so! (4 stars)

    – “The Surgeon’s Wife” is the first book I’ve read from this prolific, award-winning author William Coles, but it certainly won’t be the last! (Actually I’ve already started on another of his!) I thought the storyline and the plot development to be very well done and thought out. I feel like this level of complexity with the various characters and overlapping plotlines/ personal drama could have easily ended up badly, but instead I darn near gobbled the whole book down in one evening. There were some minor editing and punctuation things, nothing too major, and I really liked the unexpected ending. Bittersweet and awesome. Recommend. (4-5 stars)

    – I just realized as I finished this book that this is literally the first story with a sort of ‘medical’ theme that I can remember reading. And I quite liked it! Overall the world(s) and storyline(s) the author created was brilliantly imagined and fully-developed, impressive for such a short book – he really delivers on the character drama and makes great use of his pages and doesn’t waste a one. I was caught up in the drama and the intrigue, and thought the characters were quite believable. I’m not usually a fan of books that shift character perspectives along the way (feels a little head-hopping to me) but once the story really gets going you see how well it all works together. Great characters, (but some were better than others) (4 stars)

    – William H. Coles demonstrates a strong and almost addicting narrative style and great attention to detail in “The Surgeon’s Wife” that kept me eagerly turning the pages of my Kindle late into the evening. The narrative prose is vivid, and the characters really move the story forward in a compelling and engaging manner and they were the type of characters with jobs and personal drama that I haven’t read before, so that was really interesting. While I do think some parts could have been pared down some, and there were some proofing errors I noticed, this did not negatively impact my liking the book, and I will happily read more from Mr. Coles as soon as I can. He has demonstrated a remarkable ability to not only write well but he can also craft the type of book that goes deeper than just the superficial and touches on real issues and peoples’ lives in a very believable way. (4 stars)

    – I confess to being a hardcore fantasy junkie, so getting me to read anything other than that is always somewhat of a challenge. But this summer I promised myself to branch outside my normal comfort zone and read new authors and genres. This author had been getting a lot of buzz lately and his books are well-received… and while I can’t exactly nail down the genre (other than it is literary fiction that features doctors and hospital drama and relationship drama) I was interested after the first couple of pages because of how the author pulls us right in and makes us part of the story off the bat. I thought “ooh this is exciting” so I kept reading. It did slow down a little after that, but that was just so we could get to really know the characters and their roles/relations and see their story unfold… and crash into each other. Before I realized it I was completely caught up in this riveting story. The author has genuine talent in creating believable scenes, which is crucial in trying to connect with the audience. There is a genuine authenticity to the characters, even when they seem far-fetched, and the story shows a lot of heart. I enjoyed it through to the conclusion and liked how it seemed to bring Mike back with (someone) but was kind of vague…   Glad I stepped out of my comfort zone here and I hope to read more of these types of stories from Mr. Coles in the future. (5 stars)

    – “The Surgeon’s Wife” is an amazing book! I loved the way this author writes, and the suspenseful plot kept me on my toes. I read it in one night and wish there was another book after this one–I know the author has written many others, but I’m curious what will become of Mike now. I feel so invested!! I liked how the chapters were short and the descriptions were clear. This book is written very literary-style, I could totally picture the scenery and characters perfectly. If I had one complaint it was at times I thought the narrative was too dense and dragged on and we needed higher stakes action more frequently…I would have liked more immediate danger – we certainly get it toward the end (a lot) but I would have liked more evenly paced. Nothing horrible, just my opinion. But I liked how this was a tragic romance with drama and intellect and successful people who lead dynamic professional lives. A cool combination that I haven’t run across too often. Oh, and I wish it were longer.   But on the whole a great book that I really liked and would recommend to others. (4-5 stars)

    – This was a great change of pace for me, as this was one compelling, dramatic tale that I couldn’t put down! I did have to have some patience in the beginning until I felt that I was more caught up in the thrust of the story, but I enjoyed the easy flow, and unique narrative structure and plot of “The Surgeon’s Wife”, and really liked the characters! Happy that they were not one-dimensional and stereotypical, but relatable and real even when they weren’t being very nice. Just real people making mistakes, acting inappropriately, having ‘bad’ urges and desires, making dangerous choices, etc…always makes the story better! Although it doesn’t exactly end on the happiest of note, (not sad or bad, just wasn’t what I was expecting) it works perfectly for the tone of the book and of Mike’s personal and romantic journey. So pleased to see how many other books William Coles has written. Ready to read more from him! Recommend to mature readers of literary novellas (4 stars)

    – This book was great, a real surprise for me, as I haven’t read anything from this author before, and there is no real description of what the story is about on the Amazon book page. So I went in pretty blind. What lovely prose and vivid atmosphere William Coles weaved into this action packed, character-driven novella! This is one of those books where a quick summary of the plot doesn’t do it justice at all… there is much more to this book that you really have to read in order to experience. It’s hard to describe though, and there are a few separate storylines that happen simultaneously, But the way it ties together with all the characters is very cool… totally makes it a more interesting, dynamic story. Was shocked and saddened at a few things (no spoilers) but the ending makes me hope for a happier future? (5 stars)

    – I read “The Surgeon’s Wife” in one sitting. It was THAT good! One thing I really love is when I stumble across an author or book that comes up with new and creative ways to improve upon existing themes. This is wonderful because there are certain tropes, like romance, love, hate, passion, good/evil, which will never go out of style. But sometimes you can feel like you are reading the same story over and over. Well this was not the case with “The Surgeon’s Wife”! I felt like I was reading a wholly original and creative almost “cautionary” tale, if you will. Great blend of personal and professional drama that is well-written and has great flow throughout. I wished it was longer, but I highly enjoyed this book and think other will too. Not graphic or gratuitous, but probably best suited for adults. (4-5 stars)

    – For me this book was just okay. I liked the overall premise and thought it had a lot of potential, but something just failed to grab me the way I thought it should. (Note, my sister read it right after me and loved it…so there you go.) I thought there was too much “telling” of events instead of “showing”, and was always kept at arm’s length from the action…like it was happening around me but not to me, if you know what I mean. Maybe it was because of the multiple pov’s and third-person omniscient narration, but I never quite knew what character I was “tuning into” (although Michael is definitely the lead), and that is something that is important for me to do, and I wasn’t a fan of the ending.  So much of this is probably just my personal preferences, as it was a decent story and as I mentioned my sister loved it, and I do give props for the excellent writing. It just wasn’t my cuppa. (3 stars)

    – Okay thank you, this book totally rescued me from a reading slump! I swear the last 5 or 6 I’ve read I’ve put down and had no interest in in continuing past the half way point. This definitely wasn’t the situation here with “The Surgeon’s Wife” by William Coles! From the very first page the action flowed nonstop, with great character development and enough of a ‘hook’ (romantic, professional and personal with the characters) that made me feel like I wanted to know how it would all turn out. And in no way could I have predicted some things going down the way they did! Crazy! And sad and tragic at times. A fast read, (I think it is technically a novella) but with a fully developed and surprisingly complex plot. Not generic or cliché at all, even though there are plenty of “familiar elements” necessary for the genre. Solid editing and formatting. I was impressed with this author’s writing style and will look for more works from him in the future. Recommend. (5 stars)

    – I loved this book! I read in in one night and couldn’t get enough! I loved how the author William H. Coles writes, so accurately descriptive and with such passion (and it’s really dramatic at parts), so we want to read more in order to find out how the characters are connected and why it’s happening and what they will do when the S&%# hits the fan (figuratively speaking).  It was really creative and well-executed, and I loved the short, tight scenes. It made me just want to keep reading and reading, and I had to see how everything fell into place. Catherine – augh! She frustrated me for some reason. I was not disappointed by the bittersweet ending and would love to read more books from Coles in the future. (5 stars)

    – I’m a huge fan of lit fiction, so this is a genre I’m fairly familiar with. Although “The Surgeon’s Wife” lacks the luscious lyrical prose and character depth of others I’ve read, nonetheless, it was an engaging novel that held my interest and made me think. – certainly, introduced me to many new situations, and I liked seeing action unfold from the other side of the stethoscope (so to speak) I enjoyed the various POV’s Coles employs to show us the different motivations and ramifications of the unfolding course of action, and how the storylines weave together in a tension filled climactic, shocking ending. At times I thought the narrative could have used some trimming, and I would have like to see more dialogue with the characters to progress the plot, versus the narration pulling us forward (more toward the end). But overall was nicely done and I’d like to read more from Mr. Coles. (4 stars)

    – William Coles crafts an authentic, engrossing novel that was such an interesting blend of almost everything, from romance to danger to suspense, to complex medical happenings… it is really hard to just sum up or categorize it easily. That said, I did enjoy it very much once I was all the way done, but there were several parts where I wondered what was going on and did feel confused by things. I liked the characters, but couldn’t quite figure them out, which is perhaps the author’s intention. There were a few editing things, nothing too serious at all, and overall was an enjoyable, and very different, type of romance and drama story. (3.5 stars)

    – I loved “The Surgeon’s Wife”! I’ve read several books by William H Coles and liked or loved them, but I think that this one is my favorite so far. It just was so well-crafted and felt ‘smoother’ than some of his others. And I like that it actually felt unique and so many times the characters ended up surprising me with their actions. Coles isn’t afraid to get his hands dirty and pace his characters in some tight situations, and sometimes with tragic results. I read so much lit fiction it all starts to seem sorta the same after a while. One thing I though was cool was how there were basically a few main storylines happening at the same time, but it is all connected. Not just a ‘romance’ or a ‘medical drama

  9. kandscreeley

    Review from
    Human nature has always been fascinating to me. What makes people do the things that they do? This is the type of issue that William H. Coles explores in his book The Surgeon’s Wife.
    Though this book is not full of action, it does have violence and turmoil. The themes are dark and confusing as is much of humanity. Yet, the author treats this darkness in a way that doesn’t have you walking away depressed. (I find that this is often the case after I watch an episode of Law and Order: SVU.) I appreciate that, as so many times when discussing human nature, it’s easy to feel hopeless. Mr. Coles, though, manages to find the pinpoints of light in the darkness and bring those to the forefront.
    I very much enjoyed reading The Surgeon’s Wife. I found only 2 errors in the whole book, leading me to believe that it was professionally edited. That coupled with the wonderful character development leaves me with no choice but to rate this book 4 out of 4 stars. I’ve always said that any genre of book can be enjoyable as long as there is good character development even if it isn’t your preferred genre. William H. Coles proves that over and over in his works.
    Read the entire review here…

  10. kislany for

    Review from
    The Surgeon’s Wife by William H. Coles is a dramatic tale of two surgeons caught up in a maelstrom of friendship, deceit and grave mistakes.
    I picked up this book because I love medical mysteries and thrillers. For a while, I even had flashbacks of reading one of Robin Cook’s older books involving malpractice, the death of patients, and a deadly mystery surrounding the hospital. Yet, The Surgeon’s Wife is more a dark drama involving a decaying friendship and a romantic triangle, with some well-fleshed out characters that we learn to care about quite early in the book. Mike is an honest guy who wants to do right by everybody. But he can’t make everyone happy; someone’s got to lose. Catherine is a complex character who is enjoying the upper lifestyle her husband’s wealth and status offer her. Still, Catherine is not merely a spoiled trophy wife; she has a mind of her own and her own accomplishments as well. Those, however, are buried under a veil of sexism by her husband’s peers. Even though she has done much for the establishment, Catherine will always remain the “Surgeon’s Wife” for everyone else.
    Read the entire review here…

  11. Bukari

    Review from
    Mike Boudreaux is a respected New Orleans surgeon and is also the chief of surgery. Clayton Otherson is his friend and mentor. Clayton Otherson is one of the surgeons who help in the delivery of quality healthcare to his clients. Otherson performs life-threating operations on obese patients. He is the kind of surgeon who does not accept criticisms from his colleague surgeons. Therefore the chief of surgery together with the other members called Otherson to advise him, but he does not take their advice. Mike complicates the situation by falling in love with the wife of Clayton.
    The book is very inspiring to read and follow without stopping. The characters and chapters are properly fixed that drive the reader to concentrate on the book. The story too is very intriguing to me when I observed it was about a group of surgeons and the welfare of their clients. It was clear to me because I know the author is a surgeon.

    Read the entire review here…

  12. anwidmer

    Review from
    This story was surprisingly not at all what I thought it would be. I expected a thin plot with a racy affair and a predictable antagonist. This was not at all the case. The plot was deep and the characters well-developed. There are many characters in this book, all with their own stories being told simultaneously. While one would think that sounds confusing, this author expertly weaves the characters stories together leaving no rock unturned.
    I would rate this book a 4 out of 4 stars. It was thoroughly intriguing and engaging. I read every moment I had to read. I did not see the end coming at all which pleased me and left me feeling satisfied at the end. I would recommend it to anyone who loves a good suspenseful story. Even my mystery/thriller friends might enjoy this one as only a slight change of pace. I know I did.
    Read the entire review here…

  13. Storm+

    Review from
    There were a lot of things that I really liked about Coles’ writing style. Although this novel was a lot shorter than one might have expected, its language was succinct instead of entirely lacking. The author provides the reader with the details needed to further the plot and no more, ensuring that the novel has little to no unnecessary scenes. Also, the characters were excellently written. Even minor characters were interesting and detailed, providing really engaging and useful dialogue. The plot was great, moving at a pace that was neither too slow nor too fast. Furthermore, despite my initial doubts, the style and tone of the narration ensured that the subject matter became extremely interesting to me over the course of the story. In fact, I read this book in one sitting because of my level of interest rather than its short length.
    Read the entire review here…

  14. centfie

    Review from
    The Surgeon’s Wife is one of those gripping tales that are hard to put down. I think many readers will be compelled to read it from the beginning to the end. The story is moving and entertaining. The author explores themes of tragedy, dilemma, broken families, work, social class, gender, suicide, ethical issues in medical practice, and love among others. I was remarkably moved by the shattered lives of the characters and the way some managed to handle their problems while others lost their mind.
    The Surgeon’s Wife elicits a rating of 4 out of 4 stars. It is a deftly written novel that immerses the reader into controversial issues in the lives of the rich and the poor. William’s seems to remind readers that, no matter the different backgrounds we are born in, we have similar human experiences. Consider Michael’s sentiments as portrayed on page 7: “He couldn’t help being born poor. It would make more sense, and irritate him less if these aristocrats turned him away because his breath reeked.”
    Read the entire review here…

  15. danopsy

    Review from
    Reading this book will treat the unanswered questions. Will Mike deviate from his ethics to save his mentor and friend? Will Clayton lose his license? Can Mike find true love? Are surgeons capable of love? Will Clayton have a chance at redemption? Will Clayton’s family survive the storm?
    The Surgeon’s Wife is a book with a good story line and detailed characters. Even though the book is only 182 pages it never lacked any details. The book has no explicit content and little graphic violence which makes it very appropriate for younger teens up through adults. The book is not meant for lovers of action, adventure, and fantasy but its story line is that which will be enjoyed by all. The book is highly recommended to romance and fiction lovers.

    Read the entire review here…

  16. TheTrueNyree

    Review from
    I loved the entire book, it had action, and romance. Just when the reader thinks they may know the personality of a character, the book will show another side of them, having the reader reevaluating previous conceptions made based on some of the unexpected decisions the characters will make. Some scenes came out of nowhere when introducing new characters, so the reader will think at first, and then the author nicely ties it all into the rest of the story. This book had many stories going on simultaneously and yet they were all connected somehow.
    Read the entire review here…

  17. oziboagu1

    Review from
    The Surgeon’s Wife has many attractions to commend it. First is its entertainment value. Even though it is not a thriller, the book is very interesting. Once you start reading it, you will hardly want to put it down. It has a great plot and flowing narrative which truly justifys the author’s selection as a Shortlist Finalist in the William Faulkner – William Wisdom Creative Writing Competition.
    Secondly, the book is very educative. Displaying a thorough knowledge of Medical science, it describes surgical processes and terminologies so well that it can stimulate ones interest in medical practice. Most importantly, the book like The Guardian of Deceit by the same author makes the case for probity, sincerity and professionalism in medical practice. Its concern for an efficient, innovative and wholesome medical service geared towards good patients’ care is commendable.
    Read the entire review here…

  18. Iviss

    Review from
    What I liked most about the book is that all the characters are so profound and they reflect human nature.This is definitely not a simple book, even though you can read it in one sitting. It was so exciting to me to read about the development of these characters and the changes they experience. Some of them managed to get back on the track, like Catherine’s daughter, Melissa, while some of them failed to do so, but despite that the ending was absolutely unexpected. Also, the fact that the author was a surgeon himself, and that he probably used his personal experience while writing the book only contributes to the quality of it.
    Read the entire review here…

  19. Monday Michael

    Review from
    In this book, William H. Coles was sensitive to keep the suspense going. He never loosed touch of the essence of the stories. He added little humour to the story, but still in a more mature way. He was very descriptive with the scenes and plots to the extent that the reader feels involved in the action. All the characters added up so well that even to the last page, you still remember every character . William’s Management of every parts (one to three) is just amazing. you can never get lost reading this book.
    Read the entire review here…

  20. aolusegun20

    Review from
    One thing or the other makes people behave or do things the way they do. They are not to be blamed because, that’s how our nature is fashioned. All humans have the free will to choose the manner and ways he or she wishes to behave. William H. Coles carefully explains all these issues in his book The Surgeon’s Wife.
    I really like how Mr. Coles carefully manages to fully elaborate the story as well as the characters in this book. This kind of book is not a book full of action, but it speaks of violence and turmoil. Though this book is not full of action, it does have violence and turmoil.
    Read the entire review here…

  21. iphee

    Review from
    I am glad I chose this piece as my first read in the Online Book Club. I really enjoyed the book. It had the mixture of everything I look forward to in a book. There was humor, suspense, excitement, not too intense, romance, the low points and high points.
    I initially thought the book was slow paced, however, I discovered that the pace was just right for the storyline. I must commend the author for his in-depth research into the world of medicine. With an elder sister who is a Consultant, I could relate with medical world created in this book; the loyalty of junior doctors to seniors; the superiority complex of surgeons, doctors in a particular department covering up for their own, and so on. All the medical terms used were used correctly. It was a very knowledgeable and enlightening read.
    Read the entire review here…

  22. Sibhone1

    Review from
    enjoyed how the author’s story relates very much to reality making it relatable. I liked how every characters life is expounded on without straying from the main subject. This allows me as a reader to know each character in depth and also follow up on the reasons for their actions. There was also the element of surprise in the story making it more captivating. I found the ending tantalizing and loved how this story was brought to completion. It left me questioning all the turn of events throughout the story and I must say I found it a bit humorous.
    Read the entire review here…

  23. Zaza Zu

    Review from
    The theme of the book, which has already been told so many times, would be one of many if there aren’t so many layers with the very serious topics that distinguish this story from the others. One of these topics which frequently appear in the book, and again in several variants and with different effects, is the lack of parental understanding and support. On the other hand, we have a moral dilemma whether to stand aside someone who guided you in your career, although it is obvious that the consequences of this can be catastrophic or to do the right thing, and in that way betray someone who helped you be where you are. And whatever you decide, can you foresee all the consequences of your decision? Also, there are questions: how far the bruised ego can go in its selfishness? Seeing the past in a different way? Twisting the truth to fit the current view of life events? Furthermore, I would like to highlight the topic that the author described here concerning the increase in profits in medicine, regardless of whether it will harm the health of patients.
    Read the entire review here…

  24. tanyas33

    Review from
    Something that I additionally loved about this book was the beautiful imagery found throughout it. The author’s descriptions of life, very real world problems, as well as descriptions of the scenery of New Orleans and the emotions and feelings of the characters, was absolutely wonderful to read about, and the author painted a beautiful picture in my head as I was reading this book, which made me love it even more. To me, a book is enhanced and bettered through its characters and through its imagery, and The Surgeon’s Wife held all of these elements!
    Read the entire review here…

  25. Anarchel

    Review from
    I rate this novel 4 out of 4. This novel is one of the best I have read in a long time, although it is not without flaws. What I enjoyed the most while reading The Surgeon’s Wife was Coles’ style of writing. The author was not very wordy and was able to describe scenes effectively without saying too much. I enjoyed this because it allowed my imagination to fill in details and make informed guesses as I read. However, although this was the norm throughout the book, when Coles decided to describe certain scenes in fine detail, the descriptions and portrayals were masterful and immersive. Another aspect of the novel that I enjoyed was its pool of characters. The main character was relatable and, although much of his turmoil involved medically-related issues, his problems and decisions seemed like ones that anyone might face as one moves through life. The way characters entered the story was also captivating and character development was excellent.
    Read the entire review here…

  26. bboy p

    Review from
    This book has a captivating storyline, I really enjoyed this book and recommend it for a mature reader looking for a realistic medical related novel. This book gave me no room for boredom, it has 182 pages with every chapter going straight to the point therefore making the book easily understandable.
    The description of situations in this book is another excellent feature. The author included the characters’ thought on certain aspects in the book. This will help any reader to get detailed image if the situation.
    I give The Surgeon’s Wife by William H. Coles 4 out of 4 stars for a creative writing style, excellent writing flow and a realistic imagery provided. This book is a must read for medical related novel lovers.
    Read the entire review here…

  27. Booklorer

    Review from
    To conclude, let me stress the very title of the book and reformulate the sentence from the beginning: this book is not only about a complicated relationship between two distinguished doctors whose lives are tightly interwoven but also about the dreams, feelings and actions with far-reaching consequences of the surgeon’s wife. I believe that many readers who prefer dramatic plots would enjoy this book`s striking characters and the forward momentum of the story. The book pushes you to think more deeply about the characters` real nature and intentions behind their actions while wondering what you would do if faced with similar decisions.
    Read the entire review here…

  28. SMwathi

    Review from
    Characters are well developed and the reader will be attached to them from beginning to the end of the novel .Questions about choices made by characters will keep the reader engaged to the end. For instance, when Mike falls in love with Layton’s wife, who is his best friend, a mentor and his teacher, the reader starts to question his action and why the author brought him as immoral despite having positive qualities at the beginning. Up to that point, I felt betrayed by his action and I began to support Layton, although he is working carelessly in his surgeries to a point where some patients die.
    Read the entire review here…

  29. LMeads

    Review from
    I liked that the book highlights and illustrates the egos of doctors as well as their professionalism. The author shows all of the tensions of a hospital that needs to make money and at the same time monitor their physicians and staff. In this story, mistakes are tolerated by colleagues and excuses are made. Dr. Mike Bordreaux is a part of this system and his loyalty to his mentor is very strong. How he works this out professionally and personally is interesting and held my attention to the end. One of my reactions to reading this book was that I found myself frustrated with the main character (Mike) because I wanted him to be stronger and more principled as a surgeon. Of course, then the story wouldn’t have been as interesting or as complex.
    I recommend this book to those who just enjoy a good story. It has a very surprising ending. It is one of those books that you want to finish reading. I put off starting dinner for over an hour so that I could finish the book.
    Read the entire review here…

  30. mz_ejay

    Review from
    William Coles crafts an authentic, engrossing novel that was such an interesting blend of almost everything, from romance to danger to suspense, to complex medical happenings… it is really hard to just sum up or categorize it easily not just a romance or a medical drama, this book has its dark and disturbing moments, but also its wonderful and that is what made it so good. I hate books that are super predictable, and this one isn’t at all. Some parts almost make me feel like I’m right there in the story with Mike, Clayton and Catherine and everyone else.
    The characters of Mike, Clay, Catherine, Rosie, Mellissa (and the others) were genuine and believable, and I think what I liked the most about this book was just the overall feel the author managed to create where it felt intimate, like we are really there in their heads as this story unfolds, feeling the things they are feeling and seeing and experiencing. Like we are there in the OR or the Doctor’s meetings. This is a dark, intelligent story that is both easy and entertaining to read, yet deeply intense at the same time.
    Read the entire review here…

  31. Gylian

    Review from
    The characters in the book have different behaviors which make the book more interesting to read, from one character’s story to the other. The characters like Michael and Catherine demonstrate how far true love can reach and it can still exist despite the obstacles it faces. Michael is a compassionate character who knows how to treat a woman. The character of Melissa who is as stubborn as a mule describes a girl trying to fight and prove her parents wrong. Clayton portrays violence and too much rage.
    I personally liked all the characters, their roles in the context and how their stories are narrated simultaneously. The author really describes their stories in full length, with passion and he is a great narrator. The story is so interesting that it brings one to fantasize and even picture as if the whole scenario is happening there and then.
    Read the entire review here…

  32. adventurouspotato

    Review from
    Reading the synopsis of the novel makes it seem as if the plot is completely predictable. This is certainly not the case. Although I could pick up a couple of common tropes and clichés while reading, the way that Coles went about them was in unexpected and mysterious ways. The funeral scene in particular was the most unexpected for me, and I was truly shocked to see how it played out. Coles’ matter-of-fact writing style paired with the events of the plot worked strangely well together. It made the unexpected events that much more surprising because there isn’t a lot of obvious buildup that some amateur authors fall prone to.
    In all, The Surgeon’s Wife is a quick read that doesn’t seem to fall short in any area. The plot is interesting, the characters are diverse and complex, and Coles’s writing style is the perfect vessel for this story to be told. Not only is it a conflict between two old friends, but a love story between two people that put off a meaningful and loving relationship for most of their lives. The end, although it was sudden, didn’t leave me hanging, but instead closed off the narrative in a great way. Although there could definitely be a sequel, possibly surrounding Clayton’s spiral into madness, it doesn’t feel necessary. I give The Surgeon’s Wife by William H. Coles 4 out of 4 stars.
    Read the entire review here…

  33. Clarion Review by Delia Stanley

    This dramatic New Orleans story plays on themes of loss and love.
    William H. Coles’s unpredictable novel The Surgeon’s Wife focuses on the romantic relationships and family dynamics of two surgeons.
    Mike Boudreaux is a surgeon living in New Orleans. His medical mentor, Clayton, is delving into the world of weight loss surgery. With its loose guidelines and unpredictable surgical outcomes, Clayton’s practice becomes a point of contention for Mike, who, as head of the Operating Room Committee, is forced to place restrictions on him.
    When Clayton’s neglected wife finds comfort in Mike’s arms, Clayton feels even more betrayed. Thus begins his mental deterioration, which leads to erratic behavior and violence. Mike attempts to balance his strained friendship with Clayton, his budding relationship with the surgeon’s wife, and his responsibilities at the hospital, but his life becomes increasingly chaotic.
    As the novel opens, Mike and Clayton’s friendship is already teetering. Aspects of their personal histories and professional responsibilities plague their relationship. While much of the novel revolves around Mike, less is revealed about his personal history than is revealed of other characters; he is emotionally difficult to relate to. Clayton’s and Catherine’s backgrounds are explored more in depth, and their fall from prestige—Clayton from his practice, Catherine from a life of luxury—is a more accessible story line.
    The dialogue is most natural among the medical professionals, who speak in definitive ways; romantic scenes are more stilted. The writing is accessible; technical language, even in discussions of medical procedures, is kept to a minimum. Occasional artwork shows up before some chapters but is inconsistently utilized and does not add insight to the narrative.
    The book takes place mainly in New Orleans, and descriptions of the city are proficiently woven in, from turn-of-the-century luxury in wealthy areas to small, close-knit areas of the French Quarter. While the vibe of New Orleans is referenced throughout the book, it is not fully captured.
    The story jumps between characters, some of whom are abandoned for long periods of time and others of whom are introduced late in the text; they distract from the main story line. While themes of loss and pain connect all of the characters together, the plot frequently meanders. Through exchanges between Mike and the OR Committee that oversees Clayton’s practice, interesting information about weight loss surgery is analyzed, adding a modern, controversial edge. Conflict capably drives the story into unpredictable territory. By the end, all story lines are convincingly resolved.
    The Surgeon’s Wife is a surprising drama of loss and love.

  34. sandra113

    Review from
    I genuinely enjoyed reading this book, right from the beginning to the end. William’s writing was very clear and simple which amazed me. The story was not only emotional but also catchy. I could not afford to take a break for any reason, not even sipping water. The urge to know what happened next consumed me continually as I carefully navigated through the book.
    The ending was never predictable. This was the most impressive thing about this book. Each chapter brought out a unique experience. Everyone wants a happy ending story, despite this, the author was able to deliver a compelling and satisfying story with a saddening end. Though the story is a fiction, the narrator, made it more realistic. Truly, dreams may not always come true.
    This book was completely satisfactory. I can not pinpoint any reason to dislike any part of it. I recommend anyone with a passion for romance stories to obtain a copy of this book. I rate this book 4 out of 4 stars. I would love to read more from William Coles. His creativity is absolutely incredible. As a lover of fantasy, I encourage him to write more stories with emotional happy endings.
    Read the entire review here…

  35. tendwa

    Review from
    This book has a good flow; the story moves from one event to the next in an organized manner. Characters are well formed; when you look at any of the main characters – Mike, Clayton and Catherine – there is consistency in their behaviour. If you look at someone like Mike, he was depicted as a reasonable person; he remained reasonable thought this book. Clayton was portrayed as a stubborn individual; he remained stubborn in the entire book. Catherine was depicted as a strong willed lady; she remained strong willed in the entire book. This book has been done in a way that, you cannot predict what is ahead; this is a great way of keeping a reader engrossed, from cover to cover.
    Read the entire review here…

  36. ShailaSheshadri

    Review from
    I like William Cole’s books. He is a great award-winning author who writes realistically. He has a flair for word flow. He chooses apt words, sentences, and conversations for his story. He has a unique and appealing character development style. His way of describing the ambiance is fantastic. The Surgeon’s Wife is loaded with suitable emotions, reactions, and consequences. It has an in-depth plot and many fascinating scenes. I believe this book is surely a treat to the readers.
    I like to award this intriguing novel 4 out of 4 stars. I recommend this to the general public. This book is for the humanity, as it upholds morality, soft feelings, and concern for the fellow beings; a good read for all genres and age groups.
    Read the entire review here…

  37. Mr Adonis

    Review from
    Though this book is not all action, it does show violence and upheaval. The ideas are dark and confusing as is much of humanity. However, the author had a way of treating this darkness in such a way that it did not leave anybody feeling depressed.
    I like this book because its plot is deep with developed characters. I also love how medicine was entwined with the rest of the story. The fact that the author made the story relatable to reality was most pleasing to me.
    There are little or no mistakes in the write up,I discovered only two typographical errors so I’d say this novel was professionally edited. I rate it 4 out of 4 stars. I recommend this book to everyone,no matter your preferred genre or choice of books. It’s a book that will keep you captivated till the very end.
    Read the entire review here…

  38. Mumanyi

    Review from
    I liked the buildup of the storyline, the more I read it the more I was attracted and entertained by the novel, this made it easier to concentrate and enjoy the novel. The characters are well developed all-round, especially the main characters, he (the author) breathed life into the characters making them seem real and alive, this strengthened the relationship between the story and me. The plot is well choreographed to accommodate a lot of issues and storylines without necessarily overwhelming plot; this made the flow of the story seamless and accommodating. The author sights great reference from around different fields and places, I am from Kenya and was shocked when the author made a correct and precise reference to an event that happens in Kenya. The author incorporated a great sense of humour in the story, even the most evil character like Clayton was hilarious and funny to read, this worked well in keeping me relaxed and entertained. Lastly, the emotional aspect of the story was very strong and almost tangible; I cried and laughed many times throughout the course of reading the story.
    Read the entire review here…

  39. iphee

    Review from
    I am glad I chose this piece as my first read in the Online Book Club. I really enjoyed the book. It had the mixture of everything I look forward to in a book. There was humor, suspense, excitement, not too intense, romance, the low points and high points.
    I initially thought the book was slow paced, however, I discovered that the pace was just right for the storyline. I must commend the author for his in-depth research into the world of medicine. With an elder sister who is a Consultant, I could relate with medical world created in this book; the loyalty of junior doctors to seniors; the superiority complex of surgeons, doctors in a particular department covering up for their own, and so on. All the medical terms used were used correctly. It was a very knowledgeable and enlightening read.
    Read the entire review here…

  40. Ijeoma Kikelomo

    Review from
    I was especially impressed by the amount of research that has obviously gone into writing this book. The wealth of knowledge and really technical information on the gastric bypass and the administrative organization of hospitals. I found it quite informative to know of various committees and the check and balance strategies set up to closely monitor surgeons for any excesses. I actually realised the many more things that take place in hospitals, other than the care they give to patients.
    I really enjoyed the story development. Divided into three parts, the book is made up of beautifully varying characters and quite a number of themes. There is that of love, romance, child abuse, arranged marriages, broken homes, forgiveness, to name a few. Just when I thought I knew what the book was about, the author would introduce another theme. The story has an easy flow, spiced with unexpected turns and surprises that are guaranteed to keep the reader’s interest fully locked in.
    Read the entire review here…

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