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Critical Conditions (Alan Gregory #6)

3.99  ·  Rating details ·  2,166 Ratings  ·  94 Reviews
From New York Times bestselling author Stephen White comes the sixth suspense thriller featuring psychologist Dr. Alan Gregory.Summoned to the hospital to learn the motives behind a teenage girl's suicide attempt, Alan discovers that the girl's young stepsister lies near death in another hospital with a heart disease. Denied an experimental new treatment that could save he ...more
Kindle Edition, 420 pages
Published 2008 (first published March 1st 1998)
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(showing 1-30)
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Reese Copeland
Sep 27, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was the first time I had read anything by this author. I enjoyed the book. Initially, it seemed to go slow, but once things started to pick up it was better. It had a great, dark turn in the latter part of the book that kept you going until the end.

Sep 02, 2013 rated it liked it
I enjoyed the growth of these characters and issues raised. It's also sort of a safe thriller (weird huh). Very measured and controlled storytelling.
Mary Perkins
This is well written couldn't put it down just wanted to know what happened next
Mar 11, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
A good read but not as good with the therapist/cop duo as Johnathan Kellerman. Alan Gregory is called in to consult on a girl who is brought in to the ER having overdosed and in critical condition. The plot twists in that she is the older sister of a baby who has been in the news due to having heart problems and the managed health care company refusing to pay for what they think is experimental treatment.

It is an interesting story but was hard to me to get into and then is a bit winding and con
Sep 14, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The book opens with a great introduction and insight as to how Alan feels and helps others as a psychologist. The story then starts out with Alan eating lunch with his work partner Diane (self centered narcissist) and her convoluted connection to a custody case with an influential family. Alan gets sucked into another case helping a suicidal teen, that surprise surprise is connected with Diane's case and his jerk cop buddy Sam. Medical care malpractice, revenge and extortion all tie together in ...more
Christina Jennings hurst
Feb 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
3.5 Stars

Decent, fast-paced read. Wish some of the character attachments were a little less confusing but overall good book. I would consider reading more from this author.
May 10, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: steven-white

#6 in the Alan Gregory series. Alan is a psychologist in Boulder, CO and his wife Lauren is an Assistant D.A. Friend Sam Purdy is a Boulder detective and it is often difficult for Purdy to get the information he wants from Alan as Alan refuses to violate client confidentiality.

Alan Gregory series - While Lauren is
Mar 09, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Psych and crime thriller fans.
My fourth Stephen White/Alan Gregory novel and certainly the most compelling so far. I think, I am finally to the point where I am not comparing White's work with Jonathan Kellerman's books.

In this story, Gregory is called in because a 15-year-old girl, Merritt Strait, attempts suicide. Merritt's stepsister is dying and her HMO refuses pay for an experimental,potentially lifesaving operation. Soon the HMO's founder is found murdered and the evidence implicates Merritt as the killer.

A number of
Nov 20, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to KarenC by: series
An interesting plot line, watching a psychologist at work and how he treads the fine line between not revealing his patient's role in events while trying to work with the police to solve a murder in which the teenage patient is fully implicated. The writing style and plot presentation drew me in and I kept reading when I should have quit. Observing the manner in which Dr. Gregory approached people and drew out information was interesting. Considering each character and ruling them out as suspect ...more
Jan 27, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Life can be pretty mundane for Dr. Alan Gregory, a psychology Dr. in Boulder Colorado. All of a sudden things have picked up tho. A young girl has tried to commit suicide and a cohort has called for him to come do an evaluation on her. Come to find out she's the sister of a little 2 year old who has been in the news for the past while, fighting for her life with a heart infection, but being rejected by the insurance company for a new heart. About the same time, Dr. Gregory goes to pick up his co ...more
White’s story is based in the Denver/Boulder area which is nice as my own husband grew up in that area and much of what White writes about is familiar. He also deals extensively with medical billing, insurance company practices, and the mental health profession. Also, areas where I am very familiar. White’s personal biases are prevalent in his writing, but I didn’t find that too distracting. White kept the story lively and interesting while unraveling layers of the tale. I would have rated the b ...more
Lynn Pribus
May 18, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is my third read in this series, although they are not in order at all. I've been downloading from the library and not all are available. I have #1 in the series waiting for me in hardcover at the library.

I like the reader and this one had twists in the plot which were nice. These are not violent mysteries and the development of the relationships in various characters are interesting, too. Nicely written language-wise, too.

As a clinical psychologist the "I" of these novels in constantly fru
Apr 06, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
These books are always a lot more complicated than is first apparent. There are murders to solve and the culprit keeps changing as the story gets more complicated. The man murdered is in charge of a Health Insurance fund and the accused is the sister of a critically ill little girl. The little sister may be saved by an experimental procedure but the health insurance wont pay for it.
But as I have grown to expect in these books, nothing is as simple as it seems.
You need to read to the end - two mo
Dec 19, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book. I liked the concept of both of the kids in the family being in trouble in different ways. I was interested in how the managed care system wouldn't pay for the treatment and how the other child almost commits suicide. I loved the character interactions of how they figure out the mysteries of what happened and when. However the ending of this book was awful. First of all, it wrapped up too fast and it didn't make a lot of sense. The ending of it was illogical and was no ...more
Jill Manske
Jan 11, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I always enjoy reading Stephen White novels. I like the continuing characters very much - psychologist Alan Gregory, his deputy DA wife Lauren, and detective Sam Purdy, particularly their senses of right and wrong, their ethics and their willingness to bend rules if it's in the best interest of justice. In this very complicated murder mystery, White deals with family tragedies and the lengths family members will go to protect one another. Although much of the plot is easily deduced, there are a ...more
Dec 14, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: psychology
#6 in the Alan Gregory series. Alan is a psychologist in Boulder, CO and his wife Lauren is an Assistant D.A. Friend Sam Purdy is a Boulder detective and it is often difficult for Purdy to get the information he wants from Alan as Alan refuses to violate client confidentiality.

Alan Gregory series - While Lauren is visiting her ailing mother, Alan is recruited by friend Adrienne to consult on the case of a teenage girl who is an attempted suicide, suspected murderess, and refuses to speak. Her si
Richard Etzel
Aug 06, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
Dr Alan Gregory is again the story teller in this novel. The plot has many twists and turns. Different characters come into scrutiny but then recede from the spotlight as holes develop around his/her involvement. Fascinating read keeping me turning pages as quick as I could. A gruesome murder, a not likable victim, a host of possible suspects keep the story going to the very end. As often happens in the genre author gets to the end and has a weak improbable solution. In spite of that I recommend ...more
Aug 14, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, fiction
A good solid detective story. A kind of Jonathon Kellerman 'lite' if you will: a psychologist with a cop partner. Some of the interrelationships between the suspects got a little confusing and made it a more complicated mystery. I liked the theme of women and girls who get themselves in dangerous situations because they feel they have to "sell" themselves to help others. Would read another of the Alan Gregory books. I have just about read all the Kellerman books so this series is a welcome repla ...more
Dec 23, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: white-stephen
Alan Gregory has no idea what he's getting into when he's asked to take on a suicidal teenager and it isn't just because she isn't talking. It's because nothing about the case is adding up. Her infant sister is dying of a rare disease. The man in charge of the insurance company that is denying her treatment is found dead. Everyone is connected to everyone else, even if they don't know it. The mystery was very done and Gregory had reason to be where he was for a change. I look forward to the next ...more
Lynn Shurden
May 15, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Haven't read a Stephen White book in a while and don't know how I missed this one. But as always enjoy his books. I thoroughly enjoyed it. The tangled webs that we lead in any of our lives certainly were outlined in this story with the beginning of a teenager wanting to desperately help her very ill little sister. The helplessness of a family dealing with the large corporations that are now our health care providers (and ones who can determine what procedures one has) is only going to get worse ...more
Nov 25, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: mystery lovers
Recommended to Judy by: bookcrosser
Shelves: my-2010-books
I'm not sure I would agree with Goodread's description of "pulse-pounding", but this was a pretty good light read. I was pretty unsure how it would turn out (except I knew it would all be OK). It got pretty convoluted toward the end, and the scene at the end at DIA was too much!! I'm so jealous, I've always wanted to tour the baggage handling system there! LOL, a fun read overall if you suspend your disbelief. Dr. Gregory is OK as a protagonist if you forget that someone like him is unlikely to ...more
This story comes at you from lots of different angles and is sometimes a bit hard to keep track of. But, remembering the characters is important because they come together as the book moves along.

The book centers on a psychologist and his 15-year-old patient, Merritt. Merritt has a baby sister dying of a rare disease and the insurance company is refusing to pay for a last-chance treatment. The insurance company CEO dies and Merritt is the prime suspect.

So, the book is a murder mystery and the o
Jun 01, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
White really reached his stride with this one: his best novel yet centers on a family whose younger daughter is fighting for her life while the insurance company refuses to pay for the one treatment that might save her, and whose older daughter, hospitalized after a suicide attempt, becomes a suspect in the murder of the physician who heads that same insurance company. With very believable characters, including many of the standard cast that I’m coming to know so well, and plot-twists right to t ...more
Freyja Vanadis
Mar 02, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: not really anyone
I thought the ending was utterly ridiculous, with the chase scene in the baggage section of the airport. Also, White didn't do a good job of speaking like a 15 year old girl when he had Merritt describe her seduction scene with Ed Robilio. And the way he had the skycap speak, adding a few "I be here" or "it be there" to make sure we knew the guy was black, was just plain silly. If this had been the first Stephen White book I'd ever read, I would stop right there and not read any more. However, I ...more
Oct 03, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014-reads
Merritt Is the 15 year old niece of Alan 's cop friend, Sam Purdy. She is in trouble, and her little sister is being denied a heart transplant by an insurance company. Murders ensue. This one was just so-so for me. The biggest problem I had was believing that Sam had any sort of relationship with Merritt, who is the daughter of his wife's sister. The sisters are estranged and haven't seen each other since before Merritt was born, so it would be a little creepy if Sam had any involvement in her l ...more
Amanda Le
The novel was not as suspenseful as I had hoped it to be. It already seemed predictable from the moment I read the description on the back cover, save for a small twist at the end. A young teenager refusing to speak is not much of an attention-grabber, and the actual plot of the story was only partially intriguing. However, being a new Alan Gregory reader, his writing style was well-developed and the book was not so boring that I wasn't able to finish it. Although I probably would not highly rec ...more
Dec 30, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
Critical Conditions is the 5th book in the Dr. Alan Gregory series. It started off really good. His patient, Merritt, is a 15 yo girl suspected of murder. However, she is remaining silent and Alan and his detective friend are trying to find out what happened without her help. The book started going downhill when she started speaking again to tell Alan the truth to what happened. It just seemed a little far-fetched.
3.5 stars
Jul 02, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Missmath144 by: I think it was a library customer.
Merritt tried to commit suicide. The teenager is not talking at all. Our protagonist is a psychotherapist called in to treat her. Meanwhile Merritt's baby sister is lying in The Denver Children's Hospital near death. The insurance company won't pay for expensive, experimental treatment for her. Dead Ed is a doctor who was killed a couple days before. Our protagonist finds bloody clothes and Dead Ed's gun in Merritt's bedroom. All these plots come together in a pretty good mystery.
Aug 15, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: pre-2005, own
One child is dying of a heart condition and your HMO will not approve the treatments to cure her, your other child has attempted suicide and is in ICU, and may have something to do with the death of an executive of the HMO. Can life get more complicated than that. Dr. Gregory has to step into the middle of this mess and council the young suicide victim.

A very good Alan Gregory novel.
Andy Plonka
Jan 21, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Though the chances of all the events in this book happening require that one accept a large dose of willing suspension of disbelief, I really enjoyed it especially the ride several of the main characters had on the baggage transportation system in Denver International Airport. The relationships between family members in the Trent family was well done.
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name. See this thread for more information.

Stephen White is the author of the New York Times bestselling Alan Gregory novels. In his books, he draws upon over fifteen years of clinical practice as a psychologist to create intriguing plots and complex, believable characters.

Born on Long Island, White grew up in New Y
More about Stephen White...

Other Books in the Series

Alan Gregory (1 - 10 of 20 books)
  • Privileged Information (Alan Gregory, #1)
  • Private Practices (Alan Gregory, #2)
  • Higher Authority (Alan Gregory, #3)
  • Harm's Way (Alan Gregory, #4)
  • Remote Control (Alan Gregory, #5)
  • Manner of Death (Alan Gregory, #7)
  • Cold Case (Alan Gregory, #8)
  • The Program (Alan Gregory, #9)
  • Warning Signs (Alan Gregory, #10)
  • The Best Revenge (Alan Gregory, #11)

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“I hold the hands of people I never touch.
I provide comfort to people I never embrace.
I watch people walk into brick walls, the same ones over and over again, and I coax them to turn around and try to walk in a different direction.
People rarely see me gladly. As a rule, I catch the residue of their despair. I see people who are broken, and people who only think they are broken. I see people who have had their faces rubbed in their failures. I see weak people wanting anesthesia and strong people who wonder what they have done to make such an enemy of fate. I am often the final pit stop people take before they crawl across the finish line that is marked: I give up.
Some people beg me to help.
Some people dare me to help.
Sometimes the beggars and the dare-ers look the same. Absolutely the same. I'm supposed to know how to tell them apart.
Some people who visit me need scar tissue to cover their wounds.
Some people who visit me need their wounds opened further, explored for signs of infection and contamination. I make those calls, too.
Some days I'm invigorated by it all. Some days I'm numbed.
Always, I'm humbled by the role of helper.
And, occasionally, I'm ambushed.
~ Stephen White "Critical Conditions”
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