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(Dr. Schwartzman #2)

4.29  ·  Rating details ·  4,242 ratings  ·  214 reviews
Medical examiner Dr. Annabelle Schwartzman was not meant to be idle, which is why she’s back at a murder scene even while reeling from recent chemotherapy treatments. Having undergone a double mastectomy, all she wants to do is dive back into her medical examiner job. It’s a gruesome world, yet Schwartzman takes comfort in its science and precision.

But the crime she’s deal
Kindle Edition, 354 pages
Published August 22nd 2017 by Thomas & Mercer
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Rohit Enghakat
A giveaway from Netgalley. I liked the book. At places I found it tedious and the plot drags. The killings do not tie in. There is another subplot of the medical examiner's (our heroine) husband in jail and due for release. The protagonist fears he would come after her for his revenge and suspects his involvement in the murders. This thread also is incomplete. The climax is good and the twist in the story is great. However, the book lacks in building up the suspense and the excitement of reading ...more
Malina Skrobosinski
Slow build up, but well written.

I'm not sure what it was for me, but I just found my mind wandering at times, and to be honest, this happened with Danielle Girard's first in the series, Exhume. It's almost as if the characters are so fully developed that I lose interest in the storyline. Don't get me wrong, you definitely find yourself completely consumed with empathy for Schwartzman and her current situation of having just undergone a double mastectomy and going through chemotherapy. And Hal,
Mar 23, 2018 rated it it was ok
As should be no surprise to anyone, Dr. Schwartzman's stupidity in the first book has caught up to her.

While the mystery portion of the book is okay, I just can't bring myself to care about the main character. She's a pathetic fool who has allowed fear to dictate her actions, but rather than change, she just waits to be saved by one of the smarter characters. Additionally, the poor detective that tries and tries to show his affection for Dr. S. is a bit sad. In my opinion, Schartzman is too mess
Mandy White
Aug 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: net-galley
OMG... what a book!! I loved the first book in this series Exhumed and this one picked right up where that one ended. Anna is in treatment for breast cancer and at the same time she is trying to carry on her role as medical examiner all the while staying safe from her ex husband who is in jail... got all that?? this is a great book, fast paced and a page turner and I can't wait to read more. a big thanks to netgalley and Thomas and Mercer for an advance copy of this book to read and review
Aug 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
Having a double mastectomy, undergoing chemotherapy while still working as a medical examiner is how Annabelle Schwartzman perseveres. Her soon to be ex husband is a psychopath that she refuses to let win. While doing her job, worrying about her health and keeping him in the back of her mind is difficult she does it. She's definitely one of my she-roes after reading this book. I felt sorry for her fear but admired her for holding it in & putting her best foot forward.

Her latest case begins with
Brenda I McLean
Sep 05, 2017 rated it it was ok
Schwartzman Series

Picked these books because of the amazon review. I was looking for the next Kathy Reichs or Tess Gerritson. This was not it. I found the characters to be flat and the plot contrived. I hope the main character, Annabelle Schwartzman, is eventually able to break away from her abusive ex and have her HEA, but I won't be reading that book.
Mar 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 4-stars
Girard strikes a great balance here with in-depth detail for the work of medical examiner, Dr. Annabelle Schwartzman, without overwhelming the reader with too much information, and the police detective work with homicide inspector Hal Harris.

Also on balance is the book's divided plot. We have the mystery and crime that serves as the main focus of this book: a murder case. But we also have the overall characters' story arcs: namely Schwartzman's dealing with her abusive and murderous ex-husband.
Aug 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery
I won this book in a Goodreads giveaway. It's weird that I don't actually remembering entering the giveaway drawing, nevertheless I'm glad I won because I very much enjoyed the book. Thank you to Goodreads, Thomas & Mercer, and Danielle Girard.

I found the first book, Exhume, very suspenseful, but it ultimately fell flat with me because the villain was just too smart. Well, the omniscient villain was back and he still bothered me, but thankfully he played a much smaller role in the second book. W
Naturalbri (Bri Wignall)
Feb 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is such a well-written book. Throughout, you are given enough detail to really feel that you are not only a part of the story, but that you can actually feel what the characters are experiencing, yet, the author found a way to maintain a sense of unknown, insecurity about what was happening behind the scenes. It created a deep sense of connection and apprehension, as the closer I got to Schwartzmann, the more I feared for her life and those round her.

Girard did an excellent job to really c
Sep 11, 2017 rated it liked it
I enjoy Girard's characters and their development and relationships make sense to me. But excluding that factor, this book was really only meh. From about a quarter of the way through on, it read like little more than a bridge to the next book in the series, as if Girard needed a case for Schwartzman and Harris to work together while the storyline with Spencer percolated in the background. The whole thing could have been condensed to a prologue to the third book in the series. The case did inclu ...more
Katie B
Aug 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
Dr. Annabelle Schwartzman wants to keep busy while she undergoes chemotherapy treatments and recovers from her double mastectomy so she continues her work as a medical examiner. When she arrives at a crime scene she is shocked to learn the murder victim was her surgical oncologist. With her friend and homicide inspector, Hal Harris, on the case, it becomes apparent that the list of suspects is very long. And despite her abusive soon to be ex-husband in prison, Annabelle can't help but wonder if ...more
Sep 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: preordered
Most of it this book is a fast page-turner, a little dragging for me when the therapy of the MC is described.
A few deaths and a twist from the last book, where a bad decision bites back in this book.
Serial killers and some brutal scenes, but not enough to warrant a trigger warning.
And for once, also turn toward the right and the wrong way to bring someone to trial (see above...) and no vigilante or going alone into dangerous situations. Also tech is up-to-date playing some little role, without b
Apr 16, 2018 rated it did not like it
Shelves: mystery
I prefer the books I read to have an ending. When are we going to be finished with Spencer? Guess I won't know because I don't plan on reading any more of this series.
Ray Moon
Jun 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
San Francisco Medical Examiner Battles Chemotherapy, Entanglements with Her Ex-Husband, and a Close-To-Home Murder

This novel starts exactly where you would expect when the heroine is a Medical Examiner and the other main character is an Inspector for the San Francisco Police — at a crime scene. Anna Schwartzman, the medical examiner, just returned from medical leave after her double mastectomy but still is in her chemotherapy regimen. As she enters the crime scene, Hal Harris, the usual police i
Aug 28, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: danielle-girard
I have been under the weather lately and I’ve been bemoaning about getting out of bed and dragging my sorry butt to work. After thinking about Danielle Girard’s leading character, medical examiner Dr. Annabelle Schwartzman, from the latest novel in the series, Excise, I feel I have no excuse to complain. Schwarzman starts off Excise recovering from a double mastectomy and enduring the after-effects from her third dose of chemotherapy. On top of that she is constantly looking over her shoulder fo ...more
Oct 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is a very timely book. Annabelle Schwartzman discovered she had breast cancer at the end of the first book, Exhume. She also thought that she had put her ex-husband Spencer Macdonald in jail forever. But, he is in jail but struggling to get out and get to her again. She did have breast cancer and this book opens with her undergoing chemo for a double mastectomy. It is an honest story and she continues to work while undergoing the treatment. Hal, her dependable Inspector, is there for her bu ...more
Ivory Castle
Aug 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
Dr Annabelle Schwartzman is a medical examiner recovering from a mastectomy and chemotherapy. Back at work and struggling to manage the side effects of her treatment, she finds her own doctor is one of the victims she has to investigate.
What did she do in the past that will jeopardise her future and possibly the life of anyone who gets close to her?
Spencer is her ex husband currently in prison for committing cruel and sadistic crimes. He schemes to get Annabelle back and nothing will stop him.
Aug 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I took a day to finish reading Exhume - Dr. Schwartzman Series Book 1, which was a gift from a friend, because I was able to receive Excise - Dr. Schwartzman Series Book 2 for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
I do not want to give away too much but everyone needs to know about medical examiner Dr. Annabelle Schwartzman, patrol officer Ken Macy, homicide inspectors Hal Harris and Hailey Watt. This takes place in San Francisco and South Carolina.
Quick summary: Dr. Schwartzman i
Randi Robinson
Aug 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
Annabelle Schwartzman is a troubled woman. Undergoing Chemotherapy for breast cancer with thoughts of psychopathic estranged husband Spencer always in the back of her mind, she turns to her job as medical examiner in San Francisco to keep her mind and body occupied. Had I read the first book in this series, Exhume, I might have understood the details of the relationship between Schwartzman (she doesn’t like to be called Anna or Bella) and Spencer better but most was eventually explained in this ...more
Sep 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is the second book about Anabelle Schwartzman and having read the first is essential to understand what's going on. In some ways, this book follows on from the first.... Spencer McDonald is in custody but the case is far from a done deal. However, we also see much more of Schwartzman in her professional role as Medical Examiner investigating murders which are so unusual they have to be related, and yet have no apparent connection.

I found Schwartzman more relatable in this book than the firs
Dec 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
**Warning: this text may contain spoilers** As much as I enjoyed the first, the second in the series was even better. The author seemed to dive a bit more into character development which I like. It was a bit weird having a case strike so close to home with Anna regarding her doctors but I understand it was to make her paranoid that Spencer was looming closer than they realized. It saddened me that she will be pushing Ken away. I really adore his character but I understand why and it's a realist ...more
Nickie Sale
Nov 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this but found it a bit confusing. The book picks up from book 1, with Dr Schwartzman and naturally she is paranoid that everything around her is somehow being organised by her ex-husband who is in prison waiting trial for the events in the last book. When a series of murders occur, they link back to charity organisation and to Dr Schwartzman, but who and why is proving difficult to find out. Is her ex-husband involved? If so how is he doing this? Then her ex-husband's defence lawyers ...more
Melissa Ammons
Apr 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
Excise is book two in the Dr. Schwartzman Series. If you have not read Exhume, I highly recommend you do, otherwise Excise won't make any sense to you.


In Excise, we pick up where we left off in Exhume. Dr. Schwartzman has had her surgery and has returned to work as the medical examiner. Four unexplained, yet seemingly connected deaths occur. Strangely enough, these deaths all appear to be related to the chemotherapy drug, Adriamycin, on some level. Who had access to the pharmacy
Sep 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2017-books-read
Brilliant new Medical Examiner series with a doctor who prefers her patients dead and with a sociopathic husband who doesn’t exactly want her dead, but close will do.

My first Girard novels and not my last.

I couldn’t put down Exhume and wanted so much to find out how the story ended that I carried straight onto Excise, book #2.

The sociopathic husband is well portrayed - just enough details to know he is extremely creepy and enough to know that only his (or her) death will stop him.

Anna - the ME,
Dec 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
I'm so glad I actually read these books in order because it would definitely have been ruined if I had read them the wrong way round. Excise follows on pretty quickly from Exhume with all the characters you got to know in the first book.

I definitely enjoyed the first book more but this is still a good read. Spencer is still a major part of this story. Schwartzmans Oncologist is murdered and they have to try and decide whether it is just a coincidence or if Spencer has managed to get to her again
Jan 12, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I liked the two cases in the second book, but there was a lot of repetition. I might have noticed it because I heard it on audio, but there are a lot of the smaller details that are mentioned more times than required and that put me off.

In this instalment, as Annabelle recovers from the events of the previous book, she goes back to work. At work, she ends up with a lot of unknowns and the entire suspense is actually entertaining. This is not a bad sequel, but I am looking forward to the next one
Sandi Ballard
Apr 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Back again Bella

After reading the first book in the Dr. Schwartzman series, I couldn’t wait to see her ex who is in prison, get his conviction. Of course, he has a plethora of people too willing to do his dirty deeds while he is locked up.

Dr. Schwartzman’s cancer is kicking her in the gut. She’s lost her breasts and hopes it will deter the ex from any further fantasy, but he has waited over seven years to bring her back and he has no problem waiting more.

Amongst several murders, he is always lu
Sep 17, 2018 rated it it was ok
Despite my enjoyment of the first book, this one was just too slow for me. I actually read another book before I finished this one b/c I needed a break. Dr. Schwartzman is just written as such a so/so character and there is not character development of her, Hal, or Ken in this book at all. It was almost as if this book could have been a stand alone. The story with Spencer added nothing to the book except to open the door to book 3. He could have been un-named in this book beyond "abusive ex-husb ...more
Hsu Lee
Aug 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
ARC - I voluntarily offered to review this book with no obligations and my opinions are honest!
Annabelle is still going thru chemotherapy, but she won't let it stop her from doing her job.
Her first case is already a puzzle.
A surgeon ingested a toxin, but that is not what killed him.
Dr Todd Posner was not a very liked man.
As Annabelle + Hal trying to find the killer
The list of suspect just keep increasing every day.
People just did not like him.
This is a new author for me, but I do like her storyt
Melanie Hodges
Sep 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The second book in this fantastic new series has been a joy to read, albeit a real roller coaster of emotions. Dr Annabel Schwartzman is undergoing treatment for breast cancer and although she is back in work, she is certainly not running at full strength.
When her Doctor is murdered in terrible circumstances, she immediately wonders if this the work of her murderous ex husband Spencer, despite his being behind bars, this certainly hasn't stopped him killing to hurt her before.
The book is very cl
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Danielle Girard is the USA Today and Amazon #1 bestselling author of thirteen novels, including Exhume, book 1 in the Dr. Schwartzman Series, and Chasing Darkness, as well as The Rookie Club series. Her books have won the Barry Award and the RT Reviewers’ Choice Award, and two of her titles have been optioned for movies.

Download a free Danielle Girard short story here:

Other books in the series

Dr. Schwartzman (4 books)
  • Exhume (Dr. Schwartzman, #1)
  • Expose (Dr. Schwartzman, #3)
  • Expire (Dr. Schwartzman #4)

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“All the women in me are tired.” 0 likes
“Schwartzman smiled, sharing his enthusiasm. When the morgue had installed a camera with a UV filter on a tripod for timed exposures to help her identify pre- and perimortem injury patterns under the skin, she’d been as excited as Roger was now. Of course, at the time she’d been surrounded by dead people in drawers, so she’d kept the excitement to herself.” 0 likes
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