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3.7 of 5 stars 3.70  ·  rating details  ·  4,506 ratings  ·  94 reviews
Two doctors place their lives in jeopardy to find out why a young woman died on the operating table-and had her brain secretly removed.
ebook, 320 pages
Published January 4th 1982 by Penguin Group (USA) (first published January 1st 1981)
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The story starts with a girl Kathereine Collins going to a GYN clinic where she undergoes treatment for some Gynac ailments. She has starts having seizures where she smells a repulsive but familiar odor and then loses consciousness. As the book goes on it tells about other young women around the same age with the exact same symptoms. The story's main character is Dr. Martin Phillips, a doctor in neurophysiology at a New York City hospital. He is working on a self-diagnostic x-ray machine along ...more
Brain was entertaining, intelligent and completely ridiculous in equal measures. I admit I enjoyed it, despite never buying the premise for a single moment. Cook has a talent and it's for telling a good yarn that keeps the pace going. It's not so much that he's believable or a good writer (although I've read worse working in the thriller genre). Also, I think I understand TeeVee shows like House a little better having read this.
Sherri Losee
Stilted narrative, sterotypical characters . . . Stick with medicine, Dr. Cook.
Robin Cook returns to the medical thriller format in his fourth outing, "Brain".

When Dr. Martin Phillips notices some strange goings-on around the New York hospital he works in, he begins to look into it. When researching a young lady who died unexpectedly during surgery, he discovers that her brain has been removed. And that's only scratching the surface...

While I enoyed this book for periods of thrilling action sequences, strange discoveries, and the conspiracy element that emerges in the plot
Sep 28, 2013 Saara rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: friends of (medical) thrillers
Let me begin by stating that I did enjoy this book significantly. I for some reason had a preconceived notion that the story would be much trashier than it turned out to be, which might have influenced my opinion in a positive way; I was pleasantly surprised, ergo inclined toward a kinder review. My grievances are, in the end, minor ones, even though they did affect my reading experiences negatively.

Brain takes place over three days in the life of Dr. Martin Philips, a radiologist who has faired
D.K. Cherian
Too often we have come across news articles where humans have been exploited knowingly or unknowingly, in the name of scientific research. Robin Cook tackles this very issue in his novel, Brain.
A series of mysteriously deaths have occurred amongst young females and the only common factor seems to be that they have all had atypical pap smear results. Through chance, a radiologist stumbles upon one of the victims through her X-Ray, with the problem in the brain being highlighted by a new computer
A gripping medical thriller!

The overall plot of the novel was interesting and fast-paced. Having worked in a research hospital milieu and aware of the bioethical concerns of using animal and human subjects for medical research, I found this story and it's outcome somewhat plausible.

The ending felt a bit rushed and left me wanting for more. I had a different end in mind. Also, delving into the life and background of some of the characters was unnecessary and could have done w
I read Cook's book in Italian when I was 20-something and I'm re-reading them in English 10 years leater. Compared to Grey's anatomy and other medical pop culture ideas, the technical aspect of this book seems updated. The ethical implications, however, is not, and that's what I like.
Keep also in mind that I faint in front of needles and have amild sense of nausea every time I enter a clinic/hospital: for me these novels are quite interesting horror stories.
Read several of Robin Cook's medical thrillers when I was 13-14 years old, and I liked them a lot (even if they were quite simplistic, and similar to each other). Brain was my favourite - it's about a physician uncovering an unsettling conspiracy in a medical research center, where young patients are admitted with strange psychological symptoms, and later disappear. A book I've read several times (even if I don't normally re-read books).
Avid Reader
In this computer era and moral ethics sliding downhill, I have no problem envisioning something like this taking place in today's world. (with the people involved in it too but I won't put it since it would be a spoiler alert)

It was written in a manner that I wish I had a BP machine at home and it could monitor as I read. I found myself so engrossed in it and at times of danger holding my breath and reading faster hoping he'd be able to get away quicker! LMAO (just so you know, that's highly ir
Oscar Torrado
Aunque tiene todos los elementos de su más célebre novela, Coma, Cerebro no logró llenar mis expectativas, siendo éste el segundo libro que leo de Robin Cook.

La historia se desarrolla de una forma bastante lenta, y aunque sigue la misma línea que desarrolló Cook en sus thrillers médicos como por ejemplo la ética moral médica y hasta dónde es capaz de llegar el ser humano por el bien de la ciencia y la investigación, sus personajes principales Phillips y Denise no lograron transmitir ningún senti
Wow...I just finished this book and I actually feel like a need a few minutes to clear my thoughts before I can review it. It was an excellent story from start to finish. It held my attention every step of the way and completely shocked me.
Matt Champagne
A girlfriend gave me a used copy of this for Christmas in 1993. It's like "Coma" but with brains. I think. Don't really remember.
Alessandro Balestra
New York. Martin Philips, aiuto primario di neuroradiologia, è un brillante medico in carriera che suo malgrado si ritrova coinvolto in un torbido affare. Alcune giovani pazienti infatti muoiono misteriosamente, i loro corpi spariscono senza lasciare traccia. Martin insospettito indaga, e scopre che dietro alle sparizioni c'è un'organizzazione federale che finanzia una ricerca scientifica su cavie umane... "Cervello", scritto da Robin Cook che oltre ad essere uno scrittore è anche laureato in me ...more
This book barely scratches the surface of the true horror of pseudo-scientific "research" used as a front and a justification for sadistic and unspeakable torture and abuse by egomaniacal sociopaths intent on making money by inflicting the maximum amount of suffering. Which is a good thing, because otherwise it would exit the realm of entertainment and be simply unreadable.

I always like reading books from the 70's just because of the amusingly archaic technology in them, and this novel is partic
A captivating story, likeable characters but the too many fictions. The story has so many unreal and hard-to-believe tales.
Jim Swike
A great medical thriller, if you don't like going to doctors. This book, may scare you. Enjoy!
Jennifer Nelson
Great read! Very hard to put down. Just wish the ending was more conclusive.
Bevs Alba
Suspenseful & great read!
Ernest Burger
Brain is as entertaining as any of Robin Cooks books!
Although dated this was suspenseful and thought-provoking. I think it must have been out of print for awhile. Originally copy written in 1979, I had never seen it before last November when I spent an afternoon browsing Amazon.

I guess what makes these books by Robin Cook so good is that you know they not only could happen but may have happened. I heartily recommend any and all of his books that I have read (which is a lot.)

This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
This is the only Robin Cook novel I can remember reading, although I'm sure I read several, probably because I read this around the same time as Shadows by John Saul which also had to do with brain experimentation. Instead of just using the brain, the entire person was submerged in some kind of liquid (like amniotic fluid or saline or something) with her entire brain exposed, which didn't make much sense to me.
It is interesting to note the way things were in the late seventies and early eighties from the descriptions given by Robin Cook. The computers were in a nasal stage of development and were supposed to be the key to developing artificial intelligence.
The final chapter is a mixture of Sc Fi and Nazi medical experiments.
A good book to read but don't expect to become enlighted on the way the brain functions.
La historia que para estos días estaría un poco anticuada, en su momento me causó una gran impresión: mujeres hechas prisioneras en un laboratorio científico en el cual las compensaban con sensaciones placenteras (como a las ratas de laboratorio) obviamente ninguna de ellas quería escapar. Me pareció realmente tenebroso. Es como el problema de las drogas de ahora, solo que en ese entonces era únicamente fantasía.
Maybe because it is so old, or maybe because I'm old and jaded, I just didn't find this as compelling as I remember when reading COMA.

The story idea was a good one, but I feel like the last chapter or so was too vague on who done what and why and too intense in the gory/bad guy scenes.

It did keep me reading because I wanted to know more, but I'm still wanting to know more. :(
Julie Mcdaniel sealey
Wow! That was a serious and crazy twist at the end! I love that Robin Cook novels are relevant even 30+ years later. He draws on our deepest fears and keeps us turning pages with bated breath.

I only give this book 4 stars because it isn't the type of book I would read again. I reserve 5 star review for only books that can be enjoyed again and again.
A really wonderful book for anyone passionate about medicine, namely me. I very much enjoyed the detailed description of each procedure. It gave the book an air of scientific material rather than fiction. As always, Robin Cook manages to create another gripping medical thriller, and I must say this is one of the best books I've read from this author.
Allwin Jeba
A fast paced story of a huge medical cover up..
Would have been a better read if it was read close to its release.. Feels so outdated..

Author throws too many medical terms on your face, just ignore them if you like..

Ending is meh. nothing that will blow your mind away.. The whole book screams to be made a movie.. A doctor dodging bullets.. Seriously?
Somewhat dated...with the sound of the automatic report typing and the use of slide projectors for presentations and the lack of cellphones. The way things used to be.
The bureaucracy and politics in the medical center however, is very well depicted here. I was trying to escape from reality, this was a jolt back. o well.....
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Librarian Note: Not to be confused with British novelist Robin Cook a pseudonym of Robert William Arthur Cook.

Dr. Robin Cook (born May 4, 1940 in New York City, New York) is an American doctor / novelist who writes about medicine and topics affecting public health.

He is best known for being the author who combined medical writing with the thriller genre of writing. Several of his books have been b
More about Robin Cook...
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“Medical school had been a time for imaginary diseases and Martin had contracted almost all of them.” 25 likes
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