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Doing Harm

3.66  ·  Rating Details ·  2,524 Ratings  ·  426 Reviews
There are many ways to die in a hospital…being sick is only one of them.


Chief resident Steve Mitchell is the quintessential surgeon: ambitious, intelligent, confident.  Charged with molding a group of medical trainees into doctors, and in line for a coveted job, Steve’s future is bright. But then a patient mysteriously dies, and it quickly becomes clear that a killer i
Published February 4th 2014 by Macmillan Audio (first published February 1st 2014)
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Kelly Parsons Thanks so much for your questions and so sorry for the delayed reply! I'm still familiarizing myself with Goodreads and all of the terrific ways it…moreThanks so much for your questions and so sorry for the delayed reply! I'm still familiarizing myself with Goodreads and all of the terrific ways it enables me to interact with readers. I'm thrilled you enjoyed DOING HARM. As to your question: 1) I find time to write whenever I can: weekends, mornings, nights, vacations; 2) yes--I tried to make the medical aspects of the story as authentic as possible; 3) the characters were amalgams of people I've encountered over the years; 4) no; 5) no--Steve is nothing like me! Thanks again, and my second novel, UNDER THE KNIFE, is due out on February 7, 2017. (less)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Stephen King
Best damn medial thriller I've read in 25 years. Terrifying OR scenes, characters with real texture.
Judy Collins
Kelly Parsons' DOING HARM, a medical thriller, which kept me listening, on the edge of my seat, until the Epilogue and closing interview, with the author. A gripping debut for a major fiction career for Parsons!

The audiobook narrator, Robert Petkoff, was a solid reader with a soothing voice, and his performance of some of the patients - a total riot with his sarcastic tones and character private thoughts. Would highly recommend the audiobook, as a narrator can make or break a book, and in thi
Dec 13, 2013 Marvin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads, suspense
Now this is what I call a medical thriller!

Doing Harm is Kelly Parsons' debut novel and it is an excellent start for the physician turned writer. In fact I would call it the best medical thriller I've read since Robin Cook in his Coma days and that's going back a bit.

The premise involves surgeon Steve Mitchell who is seen as an excellent doctor looking forward to an outstanding future. But a bad call in judgement threatens his career. When one of his patients dies after what seems to be another
Dec 05, 2013 Carol rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, debut
My sincere thanks to Netgalley and Macmillan publishing for the opportunity to read Doing Harm" before its February 2014 debut.

As a fan of both Robin Cook and Michael Palmer I was thrilled to learn there was a new doc on the block. Kelly Parsons, a board-certified urologist has proven himself worthy to join this team. Parson's medical knowledge is apparent from the get-go as he explains treatments and procedure like any good doctor should.

Stephen Mitchell, Chief Resident at prestigious Boston Un
Mary Beth
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 20, 2014 Esil rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
I won this book on Goodreads, and it was generally a good read as far as mystery/thrillers go. Although for me the best part was actually the view of how hospitals work and surgeons function. It felt real and had interesting details. The plot itself was a bit too predictable and straight forward as far as mysteries go. Having said that, I would happily read another book by Parsons, and hopefully he will use his knowledge and talent to build a more sophisticated plot.
Andrea ❤Ninja Bunneh❤
Once upon a time, I was a Robin Cook junkie. I loved psychological thrillers, but give me a medical thriller and it was like getting candy on Halloween. When I saw Doing Harm on NetGalley, the junkie woke up and hit the request button.

Dr. Steve Mitchell is a 4th year surgical resident in a prestigious hospital. His ego is inflated to the size most physicians never attain. Why that is I have absolutely no idea. Yes, he's the chief resident but, he is still just a resident. Residents are put on e
Things are going great for Chief Resident Steve Mitchell. With the help from his outgoing and charming wife Sally, he learns he is a top candidate for his dream job in Boston after he completes his surgical residency. However, when a patient under Steve’s care dies, his job prospects are less secure. With the help of a friend, Steve tries to get to the bottom of some suspicious events going on in the hospital, but he puts himself and his family in the targets of a dangerous killer.

This is a uniq
Jun 07, 2014 Trinity rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014
I was really excited to read this book because of the amazing reviews. I'm wondering how many of them were paid for it. I'm sorry but this book was ridiculous. First of all I feel like the author has no respect for women. The not very pretty and emotionless wife, the hot crazy murderer, the pale and anorexic ocd lawyer, the other anorexic date at the dinner party... wtf seriously?

Then we have Louis.. if you're going to write about a Marine, do it right. Once a Marine, always a Marine. You never
Cathe Olson
It seems to be a new trend that professionals in certain fields try to write novels that takes advantage of their knowledge. I recently read Snapshot, a law-type thiller which was written by a former Federal prosecutor--and now this one, a medical thriller written by a urologist. While these authors have a lot of knowledge on what they are writing about, they are unforunately not writers.

In the novel Doing Harm, the plot is pretty ridicolus, the characters are one-dimensional, the killer is rev
Oct 06, 2016 Tasnim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Medical thriller books are pretty good!
The end reminded me of a quote which says "The best way to fight chaos is with chaos."
Ryan Dejonghe

“Like a good CSI episode.” That’s how one of my friends described this book. I agree with him. The writing was capable, informative, and overall entertaining. However, the plot was entirely predictable and the female characters had no umph.

What got me to read this book was Stephen King’s quote, “Best…medial thriller I've read in 25 years. Terrifying OR scenes, characters with real texture.” This reminds me why Gabrielle Zevin’s character A.J. Fikry called these blurbs “the blood diamonds of the
Nov 28, 2013 Angie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

James Patterson meets Atul Gawande
Dr. Steve Mitchell is a senior surgical resident at a prestigious Boston hospital with excellent prospects for a faculty position at the institution’s medical school. He’s married to a wonderful wife and has two delightful children. Life can’t get much better. Then his patients start dying, and Steve realizes that the deaths are not accidents. Steve has to stop the deaths before his professional future is irrevocably destroyed…but he can’t tell anyone what is ha
This is more than a 3 star but not quite a 4. 3.5 star.

It's tense. And the plot held interesting concepts. Although it really is not a who dun it, because you know who dun it. And I don't doubt it could happen in real life either.

But it was too glib, too long winded, too "cool" in the telling? You definitely had to have interest in long technical descriptions of all the minutia of certain surgical procedures. And I have patience for that and also for the family scene toddler hilarity minutia inv
Linda Strong
Feb 02, 2014 Linda Strong rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2015
Dr. Steve Mitchell is a bright young surgeon who has a brilliant future ahead of him, that is, until patients start dying all around him.

The psychopath who has latched onto him is revealed really early in the book. Her reasons why are as twisted as her mind. She wants to play a game .. a game in which more people are going to die if he can't stop her. And she is good, very, very good at what she does.

The book has the feel of Fatal Atraction. There were moments, especially toward the end that my
How long has it been since you’ve read a good medical thriller where the main character is being railroaded, patients are suffering and dying needlessly and even though the psychopath responsible is known to the reader, there really doesn’t seem to be a way to prove it? Dr. Steve Mitchell is an excellent surgeon with a bright and promising future who thrives in the operating room until one fateful surgery begins a downward spiral in his career and his confidence. When he continues to make mistak ...more
Feb 04, 2014 Jimmmunchel rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

By Kelly Parsons.

There are many ways to die in a hospital…being sick is only one of them.
What a great tag line for what I consider to be the best medical thriller written in the past 20 years. Talk about doing my best to get through the day and after everything quieted down getting back to the medical infra structure .that makes DOING HARM by Kelly Parsons work so well.
Chief resident Steve Mitchell is a doctor with big plans for himself. He has a wife who spent many years in human res
Randa Mashnouk
Aug 16, 2016 Randa Mashnouk rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"It's amazing that there are so many different ways to die in a hospital that have nothing to do with being sick..."

بقولو انو الناس ما بتتذكرك إلا لما بتخطأ، فما بالك إذا دكتور أخطأ؟
أي طبيب ممكن يشرد بأي لحظة و ممكن يخطأ بالتشخيص أو بالعملية، هالخطأ إما يكون بسيط جداً و ممكن اصلاحه أو مميت.
باختصار الرواية بتحكي عن حياة طبيب جرّاح بمشفى جامعي مرموق و الو سمعة و مرتبة عالية عالمياً، فجأة بتبلش سلسلة أخطاء بسيطة جداً بس أدت لوفاة مرضاه و ببلش شعور الذنب و الأسى يلعبوا فيه مع خطورة فقد عمله بالمشفى.
Jul 21, 2014 Ben rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jordyn Redwood
Feb 20, 2014 Jordyn Redwood rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Marilyn Rondeau
Jan 28, 2014 Marilyn Rondeau rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Steve Mitchell, chief resident at a prestigious teaching hospital in Boston has everything going for him. Ambitious, intelligent, confident and at the top of the heap for a coveted job to join the faculty - his future is practically a given! But in the space of a few days, a patient dies, a simple surgery turns into a disaster, and Steve realizes a killer is on the loose in the hospital. Indications are pointing in his direction, and Steve is aware he is being set up by a cold blooded psychopath ...more
Carole (Carole's Random Life in Books)
This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life

I received an advance reader edition of this book from St. Martin's Press and Net Galley for the purpose of providing an honest review.

I am giving this book 4.5 out of 5 stars. This book took quite plot twist and turns which kept the pages flying. While some readers may find some of the medical scenes a bit too realistic, I loved what those details brought to the story. This book was written by a doctor and the surgery scenes definitely were a
Jenny Maloney
The author of this novel is obviously an intelligent dude. While some readers may find medicalese a difficult language to navigate, I thought it made this thriller waaaay more thrilling than it would've been otherwise. When our main character, Chief Resident Steve Mitchell, is up to his elbows in tumors and delicate procedures, it's hard to look away. You feel every placement of Steve's instruments in this story and Parsons does a pretty good job of explaining all of the procedures and the stake ...more
Feb 15, 2014 Cheryl rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dr. Steve Mitchell is a good surgeon. He is also in charge of training the new medical students. Steve is hoping to also further his career. If all goes right then, Steve will have everything...great career, wife, and children. Sadly, luck is not on Steve's side. First his patient goes into kidney failure and his next patient, he almost kills. It seems that there is something more sinister happening at the hospital like a serial killer that wants to teach Steve a lesson.

This book did not read l
Jul 25, 2016 Erin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think that I must have wanted to read this because my beloved Stephen King recommended it so highly.

***Yeah, I didn't like it as much as my beloved Mr. King, nor did I think it deserved all the other accolades that are on the book jacket. It wasn't bad, exactly, just nothing special.

Steve Mitchell is an arrogant, over-confident chief surgery resident at a world-renowned hospital. He has a loving wife and two small children. Steve has an exciting future before him and then proceeds to make s
Apr 28, 2014 Elaine rated it really liked it
Shelves: audio
Is there an alternate ending? I mean the entire story was remarkable especially for an author's debut novel. He carries the reader through the entire book at breakneck speed. At the end though, he lost his rhythm and the story falters from there. It was a cop-out ending which only got worse. If I was his editor, I would have handed back the manuscript and told him to redo it - make it believable.

What does the Bible say about pride? That it goes before destruction? That is the case with Dr. Mitch
Feb 13, 2014 Nicolle rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Did not finish. Oh, Dr. Parsons, I was so excited to read your interview in BookPage. I thought that we'd finally have a fresh voice in the medical thriller genre, but I was disappointed. The protagonist wasn't the least bit sympathetic, there was gratuitous sex and profanity throughout, and the antagonist (along with their motive) was revealed just halfway through. That's when you lost me. I could have handled any one of these shortcomings on its own, but the combination did me in, making me lo ...more
Mar 08, 2014 Elizabeth rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow! This is a great audio. I recommend it to anyone who enjoys thrillers. The plot had so many twists and turns, I never knew where it was headed next. I hope this author writes another book.
ioline gomez
Jan 04, 2017 ioline gomez rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Thoroughly enjoyed this book! Not a huge fan of the ending, but it was a fast paced page turner nonetheless.
Sep 27, 2016 Sarlis rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: printversion
Ich hatte mir etwas anderes darunter vorgestellt, habe mich nun dazu entschlossen es abzubrechen.
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KELLY PARSONS is a surgeon and professor at the University of California, San Diego. He lives with his family in Southern California.
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“The moment we’re born, we start dying. We spend our lives dying.” 3 likes
“The moment we’re born, we start dying. We spend our lives dying. Some of us just get there sooner. You never know when you might hop off the local and end up on the express to death. Think about it.” 0 likes
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