By Carol Cassella
(Simon & Schuster, Paperback, 9781416556114, 320pp.)
Publication Date: June 9, 2009
Other Editions of This Title: Hardcover
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Now in paperback, Carol Cassella’s riveting national bestseller that seamlessly melds compelling women’s fiction and medical drama to create an “involving debut that’s just what the doctor ordered” (People).
• Perennial hot subject: From ER to Grey’s Anatomy, from Complications by Atul Gawande to Stiff by mary roach, there’s a proven appetite for stories of human drama centered around medical establishments.
• Authenticity: Carol Cassella is a practicing anesthesiologist in Washington state whose work informs that of her compelling heroine, Dr. Marie Heaton, as well as the fabulous medical writing throughout the novel.
• Gripping, timely story: Oxygen opens with Marie Heaton, an anesthesiologist at the height of her medical career, facing a nightmarish operating room disaster that ends a child’s life and launches a tangled malpractice suit. As Marie twists through depositions, accusations, and a remorseful preoccupation with the dead child’s mother, she must also cope with her own aging father and confront questions of love and betrayal, family bonds, and the price of her own choices. With a final twist as heartrending as it is redeeming, Oxygen is a gripping and auspicious debut.
Carol Cassella majored in English Literature at Duke University and graduated from medical school in 1986. She currently practices anesthesia in Seattle and is a freelance medical writer specializing in global public health advocacy for the developing world. She lives in Bainbridge Island, Washington, with her husband and their two sets of twins.
"In Oxygen, Carol Cassella's taut novel, Dr. Marie Heaton, an assured anesthesiologist at the top of her game, is forced to face the personal and professional fallout from an operating room disaster. Marie finds herself on the losing end of dollars-and-cents medicine in a malpractice suit, questioning herself, her skills, her colleagues, and her life choices. I couldn't wait to race to the end to see how her story played out, and I wasn't disappointed." -- Lalita Tademy, author of Cane River