Pretty close to Harlan Coben’s first or second novel, narrated by Scott Brick, 13.5 hours of listening in unabridged audio format. Audible indicates a release date of September, 2011 by Brilliance Audio. The original hardback edition if Miracle Cure goes way back to the early 1990s.
An aids clinic, on the cusp of discovering a Miracle Cure, is losing patients via violent murders. If a cure is found there are those who would benefit financially, there are many with suspicious motive. A religious zealot doesn’t believe a cure is possible and the disease is a godly punishment, and there are zealots for the cause of a potential cure. The grizzly murder of a senator’s son and the diagnosis of a world famous athlete brings all to a head. The sleuthing of a determined cop ensues. Thus is the thrust of Miracle Cure.
Why I liked. Miracle Cure is a who-done-it, ergo I’m in! The suspects are plentiful. The timeframe is unique – early 1990s. No cell phones, no email, no internet. I don’t believe the word ‘computer’ is in the book, although they were around back then – big clunky things. So, getting into the settings was a challenge. In several instances characters make phone booths telephone calls, cops and doctors use pagers – fun to imagine.
Why I didn’t like. Harlan Coben makes an apology in the opening segment, but tells us that he still loves the book. The writing is that of a talented, albeit novice writer. The good stuff is going to come years later and I guess you gotta start somewhere. The future of Coben is easily spotted in Miracle Cure, i.e., an intricate plot, some thrilling and scary moments. But, you can also spot the flaws – like some areas of character definition unclear, plot at times confusing. There is a wrap-things-up-quickly segment in the last chapter I didn’t care for at all. Too much explaining by the author. A few this -is-what-happened-and why conversations between characters I found annoying.
Scott Brick is great, lots of diverse voices in Miracle Cure.
Miracle Cure is certainly listenable/readable – but don’t expect the quality of later Harlan Coben books.