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3.70  ·  Rating details ·  7,823 ratings  ·  1,121 reviews
With the compassion of Jodi Picoult and the medical realism of Atul Gawande, Oxygen is a riveting new novel by a real-life anesthesiologist, an intimate story of relationships and family that collides with a high-stakes medical drama.

Dr. Marie Heaton is an anesthesiologist at the height of her profession. She has worked, lived and breathed her career since medical school,
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published July 1st 2008 by Simon & Schuster
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Average rating 3.70  · 
Rating details
 ·  7,823 ratings  ·  1,121 reviews

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Jan 19, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
Well, not really fair to rate and review your own book, is it. I liked it! Hope you do.
Jan 26, 2010 rated it liked it
This was interesting material but I thought the book was just okay. Too many words at many points in the book, too many times when the narrator just went on and on and on....and then the ending seemed hurried.

I really got annoyed with reading, over and over, about how guilty Marie felt and also about her moping around. The dreariness of her everyday life and the too-long descriptions of her angst were just too much and did nothing to advance the story. Enough already!

I found myself getting ann
Marialyce (absltmom, yaya)
This book was fair. It was semi interesting as we learn of an anesthesiologist's world and the struggle this particular doctor goes through in order to retain her good name and find a balance in her life and family. It was a book of many misunderstandings in the life of Dr. Heaton who is accused of manslaughter in the case of a young girl she surgically treated.

There are so many twists and turns as the doctor assumes a defense/detective role in discovering the how and why of the child's death.
Review to come...good first book

This is a first novel by real life Dr. Carol Cassella and a good first novel it was. We are taken into the world of Dr. Marie Heaton, an anesthesiologist who works in the hectic, fast paced setting of a Seattle hospital. Her personal life and family life is not very exciting and she lives for the work she does. When something goes terribly wrong under her watch, she is thrown into a whirlwind of guilt, veiled accusations and legal woes and wonders if the world sh
Elyse  Walters
3.6 stars!

Easy Fast read! I enjoyed this book --(it was 'good' --not GREAT). The protagonist of this story --[the anestesiologist], is a single woman who when not at the hospital spends her 'off' time at home -- --collapsed in bed filled with guilt, and anxiety. She is frightened and is losing her confident as a physician. It was her first time she "lost a child".

A large section of this book, (middle section) was somewhat annoying because while reading about this doctor wrestle with her consci
Oct 13, 2009 rated it it was amazing
If you believe that author’s should write what they know you should like this book. And even if you think that’s not true, as some authors do, you’ll appreciate that Carol Wiley Cassella brings her profession as an anesthesiologist to life in the pages of her debut novel, Oxygen. As oxygen (the gas) is required for breathing, Cassella’s book is equally breathtaking. Though there is an element of mystery to the story, it is really more an exploration of the medical system and its inadequacies. It ...more
Aug 24, 2009 rated it really liked it
Oxygen is about Dr. Marie Heaton, an established anesthesiologist at the tip of her career. Her life is consumed with putting people out of their pain and supplying them with oxygen; her entire existence revolves around her work. However her carefully constructed lifestyle falls apart when one of her patients dies on her operating table. Soon enough a malpractice suit is filed against her by a single mom who has lost her only child - also, she has to deal with her father's vision loss and their ...more
Jun 09, 2010 rated it really liked it
4.0 out of 5 stars A breath of fresh air in the medical thriller genre....., September 7, 2008

This review is from: Oxygen: A Novel (Hardcover)

I'm an RN and I love medical thrillers. For the past several years, however, it's been tough to find really good ones about something new and different. This really wasn't a "thriller" per se, but it was a novel that had a hint of mystery in it -- the goal -- to find out what caused the sudden, inexplicable death of an 8 year old girl on the operating ro
Nov 21, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I expected this book to be a fluff read. You know, a good book to read on a beach. Well, since it's winter here in Minnesota, maybe I should just say, a good book to curl up by the fireplace with. It was definitely much more than that. I request books from my library that I've read reviews of or heard about from friends. This one had so many requests. I've been waiting so long, I've forgotten where I heard about it.

Dr. Marie Heaton is a dedicated anesthesiologist. She loves the technical aspect
Jan 02, 2021 rated it liked it
A somewhat interesting medical fiction but not a page Turner. Felt my self kinda bored by it but the medical parts of it where good. But the plot wasn't very thrilling. An okay read ...more
Nov 26, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2009
I'm not sure how to rate this. There were parts I loved and parts that didn't do it for me. What I liked: the premise, the plot twist (also enjoyed that the twist had its OWN twist), and the tension created at the end of the book that kept me anxiously reading. What I didn't like: the B storyline (just wasn't into it and kept wanting to get back to what was happening in Seattle), too much medical jargon at the beginning that made it sterile at first, and, frankly, the protagonist. I just couldn' ...more
Jun 18, 2013 rated it liked it
I enjoyed Marie's unusual perspective on the world. She has a way of looking through people's exteriors, straight into the depths of their organs and right down to their little microscopic cells. That is a bit depressing, as she is constantly evaluating people's various degrees of corporeal decay; and also refreshingly equalizing, as gradual corporeal decay is the inevitable fate shared among all living creatures.

(view spoiler)
OXYGEN (Novel/Med. Mys- Dr. Marie Heaton-Seattle-Cont) – Good
Cassella, Carol – 1st book
Simon & Schuster, 2008, US Hardcover – ISBN: 1416556109

First Sentence: People feel so strong, so durable.

Dr. Marie Heaton is a skilled anesthesiologist. Her life is off track and her career at risk when a child dies during surgery and Marie is being sued for malpractice. Although she tries to keep working, she must work to find out exactly what happened during the operation in order to retain her career, finan
Aug 25, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-2016
Good book. The medical parts were very well written. The agony of the main character was a bit much, but the storyline was exciting and I wanted to keep reading to see how it would all turn out.
Carolyn Gerk
Aug 13, 2011 rated it liked it
Oxygen follows the story of Dr. Marie Heaton, anesthesiologist as she deals with a case in which an eight year old patient dies on the operating table.
An interesting topic, kind of felt like a slow moving Grey's Anatomy episode. The information about anesthesiology was interesting, I enjoyed heaton's reflections about the power of putting a person to sleep and holding them safely in a pain free lull during crisis. Some beautiful writing and observations are scattered throughout the novel.
Della Tingle
Apr 28, 2020 rated it really liked it
This first, I honestly did not like Carol Cassella's Oxygen, but that is partly my fault as I don't read book jackets prior to reading. I don't want ANYTHING to be given away. So, I struggled through wondering what the point of the book was. Then, I was pure sick over main character, Dr. Heaton, being pure sick herself due to a devastating occurrence in surgery. She is so distraught, she is dreaming of the event, and her sister tells her, "Your subconscious came up with this to ...more
May 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A book which makes you see the other part of the coin - the one of empathy, compassion coupled with professionalism and dedication.
Chloe (Always Booked)
Jul 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Julie Christine
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 31, 2008 rated it it was amazing
My Review of Oxygen: A Novel by Carol Cassella

Carol Cassella’s mixture of mystery and medical thriller, supported by the authenticity of her many years as an anesthesiologist, results in her page turning debut book, Oxygen: A Novel. Casella’s Dr. Marie Heaton is also an anesthesiologist who is passionate and professional about her life’s work. She works at Seattle’s First Lutheran Hospital where she prides herself in the care and expertise with which she conducts her everyday life as a physician
May 21, 2011 rated it really liked it
Dr. Marie Heaton’s life is her work as an anesthesiologist. She has friends, but they’re comprised of colleagues who live the same hectic, work-centric life as she. Forced to take a leave of absence from her demanding job, she finds herself returning to her most important relationships – those with her family – for support and for reparation.

Oxygen is a novel about a single medical mistake with an unconscionable result. It is about a doctor who, while struggling with guilt, refuses to be crushe
Sep 16, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I picked this one up after I had seen several good reviews of it and I am so glad that I did. I just gobble up any kind of medical drama and I am so glad to say that I have found a new author to love after reading this. The writing, the story, the setting it all worked really well for me in this book. I was interested to learn more about anesthesiologists and this book opened my eyes to just how involved their jobs are. It is so much more than pushing IV drugs into someone. I know it is a profes ...more
Kristina V. Ramos
May 29, 2016 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 14, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It was refreshing to read a book that gets the medical facts correct. I had the error figured out from the beginning. Non-medical people probably wouldn't catch it. Even so, i only had one part right, the details at the end caught me by surprise. An engaging read. ...more
Jan 24, 2012 rated it it was ok
Wow, I can't believe I stuck with this one just for this one little plot twist. I should apply the same dedication to exercising and this author should keep her day job. Like, being an anesthesiologist isn't fun enough, gotta be an author too? ...more
Mar 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
Review coming (hopefully).
Apr 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Great read especially if you like medical lingo.
Apr 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ebook, book-club
I really enjoyed this first novel. I loved the medical background and the insights into the emotions pre-surgery. I've had 8 operations to date and in South Africa, our anaethetists (anesthesiologists) don't have discussions before surgery (except for before my emergency C-section with my twins) so this was fascinating to me. I will say that now I'm a lot more scared (!) as I know what can go wrong. I thought they put you under and that's that 😉

It was also scary to me how a person who is diligen
Kate McDougall Sackler
I am not sure how I feel about this book. It was hard to read because as a medical professional litigation is your biggest fear, so I was so anxious reading it. But an anesthesiologist in the states practicing for 12 years who had never been involved in any kind of case before I found unrealistic. The story was very slow moving in the middle, but really picked up by the end. I was glad that a small detail that had irked me from the start proved important to the conclusion.
2019 reading challenge
Jul 12, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This novel about an anesthesiologist who is blamed for a young patient’s death was a good read. There were times I thought it was slow, but then I would appreciate the author’s way of building suspense. Recommend if you like medical dramas like I do!
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Carol Cassella, M.D. is a practicing physician and national bestselling author of two novels, Oxygen (2008) and Healer (2010), both published by Simon & Schuster and translated into more than a dozen languages. She majored in English Literature at Duke University and attended Baylor College of Medicine. Carol is board certified in both internal medicine and anesthesiology, and practiced primary ca ...more

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