Obsessed [NOOK Book]


G. H. Ephron's gripping crime novels deal with fascinating psychological symptoms at work in the minds of murderers and their targets. In Obsessed, forensic neuropsychologist and expert defense witness Peter Zak is trying to help a coworker, Dr. Emily Ryan, who is being tormented by a stalker. She doesn't have any idea who it could be, and his acts have been escalating, to the point where he's breaking into her car and leaving sick messages. Peter is increasingly worried about where the violence will end. And ...
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G. H. Ephron's gripping crime novels deal with fascinating psychological symptoms at work in the minds of murderers and their targets. In Obsessed, forensic neuropsychologist and expert defense witness Peter Zak is trying to help a coworker, Dr. Emily Ryan, who is being tormented by a stalker. She doesn't have any idea who it could be, and his acts have been escalating, to the point where he's breaking into her car and leaving sick messages. Peter is increasingly worried about where the violence will end. And there is no lack of suspects, as the naive Emily seems to attract admirers blindly; from her colleagues at the Neuropsychiatric Unit where she is studying the brain and its disorders to the other doctors at the Pearce Psychiatric Institute, even Peter notices himself responding to her blond good looks and puppy dog eyes. Or, as suggested by Peter's friend p.i. Annie Squires, is Emily more aware of her appeal than she lets on?

When one of the potential suspects turns up dead, what started as a nuisance is suddenly much more complicated, and dangerous. Once again, G. H. Ephron delivers a complex, absorbing case that turns upon Peter's expert knowledge of human nature.

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Editorial Reviews

The Washington Post
The medical setting is fascinating, and readers get to learn a lot about both dementia and a strange psychological condition called "apotemnophilia " (yes, I'm going to make you look it up). The characters are all distinct and nicely drawn, and the rapid-fire pacing is helped along by crisp writing that does not linger on useless details. Obsessed is a good bet for mystery readers who like a little dose of science with their crime fiction. — Katy Munger
Publishers Weekly
Due to the initially slow plot and a surfeit of medical detail not for the squeamish, Ephron's fourth mystery featuring Boston-area forensic psychologist Dr. Peter Zak satisfies less than its immediate predecessor, Delusion (2003). Zak investigates the stalking of a flirtatious physician, Emily Ryan, who works in the laboratory where doctors James Shands and Estelle Pullaski are hoping to find a breakthrough to treat Lewy body dementia, the brutal cousin of Alzheimer's disease. When Zak's girlfriend's uncle becomes a lab patient and almost dies of a bacterial infection, Zak suspects Shands and Pullaski are harvesting brains to use in their experiments. With the death of one of the lab staff, found crushed under an MRI machine, Zak is confronted with outright murder. The plot, once it builds up steam, becomes one of the author's most slick, but at the expense of character development. Still, the writing is as sharp as ever, with fewer clich s and fresher similes and metaphors than have appeared in past novels in what remains a series to watch. (Dec. 8) FYI: G.H. Ephron is the pseudonym of the writing team Hallie Ephron and Dr. Don Davidoff. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
Series protagonist Dr. Peter Zak (Addiction) nearly encounters Dr. Emily Ryan's stalker when he rescues her in the parking lot of the Boston psychiatric hospital where they both work. He becomes further involved after sending his girlfriend Annie's uncle to the experimental brain research clinic where Emily also works-for an ambitious mad-scientist/MRI researcher. Events take a sharp turn for the worse when the clinic doctor most sympathetic to Annie's uncle is murdered, and circumstances point to Emily as the culprit. Zak does his utmost to prove her innocence. A competent and complicated plot, then, for series fans. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Another troubled soul for neuropsychologist Dr. Peter Zak, this time not a patient but a colleague. Someone is stalking Dr. Emily Ryan, a postdoctoral student Peter (Addiction, 2001, etc.) is mentoring at Boston's Pearce Neuropsychiatric Institute. And it's not just a romantic fantasy gone awry. Whoever's following her is keying her car, letting the air out of her tires, and stealing her stuff. Peter wonders if the stalker isn't Emily's ex, gym teacher Kyle Ronan, who "majored in beer and sports"-until he realizes that Kyle thinks the stalker is him. As the threats against Emily mount, they seem to engulf other people at the University Medical Imaging Center, where her boss, Dr. Jim Shands, is using an ultrapowerful MRI to diagnose cases of Lewy body dementia in search of a therapy for patients who usually die within a year or two. The problem is that Shands's patients seem to die even earlier, as Peter realizes when he persuades his lover, attorney Annie Squires, to bring in her uncle, retired Somerville cop Jack O'Neill, for an MRI and he contracts a nasty case of pneumonia. What's the connection between Emily's stalker and the dangers lurking within the MRI supermagnet's core of liquid helium? Only a series of violent deaths will tell. Peter's fourth case is his most conventional, moving from genuinely disturbing hints about Emily and her stalker to well-worn medical-thriller territory and a finale out of James Bond.
From the Publisher

"A well-crafted tale with a killer climax." --Linda Barnes, author of The Big Dig

The most compelling medical mystery I've read in a very long time...intelligent, taut, and utterly terrifying. "--William G. Tapply, author of Shadow of Death

"A sinister and attractive psychologist, a serial killer, a terrible discovery...a winner. A fine addition to an outstanding series." --Sarah Smith, author of Chasing Shakespeares

"The plot builds up steam [to] become one of the author's most slick...The writing is as sharp as ever ...in what remains a series to watch."--Publishers Weekly

"As in previous novels in the series, this one combines an appealing hero with a large dose of detail concerning medical procedures. A good choice for medical thriller fans."--Booklist

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781429973588
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Publication date: 4/1/2007
  • Series: Peter Zak Mysteries , #4
  • Sold by: Macmillan
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 192,634
  • File size: 269 KB

Meet the Author

G. H. Ephron is a pseudonym for two writers, Hallie Ephron, a journalist, and Donald A. Davidoff, Ph.D., a practicing forensic psychologist. They are the authors of three previous Peter Zak mysteries. Both live in Massachusetts.
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Table of Contents

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 3 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 6, 2007

    Is this supposed to be a mystery?

    Obsessed starts out pretty decent, with the promise of a stalker terrorizing a coworker of Peter Zak, Dr. Emily Ryan. But it ends up taking a back seat to Zak's relationship with his girlfriend Annie, and to the medical jargon surrounding Lewy body dementia. Although the book always describes the medical conditions and research in layman's terms, this is supposed to be a mystery, not a medical drama. The attention of the plot is directed at the patients rather than the murder victim(which is treated as a distraction to the day-to-day rounds of the doctors and researchers). I stopped reading about halfway through the book, as it does not have enough gas in the tank to keep the attention going.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 9, 2003

    A fantastic medical thriller

    Forensic psychologist Dr. Peter Zak is happy working at the prestigious Peace Psychiatric Institute and is looking forward to keeping his date with private investigator Annie Squires. When he walks to the parking lot he notices that Dr. Emily Ryan, who he is supervising, has a flat tire and somebody keyed her brand new Miata. When Emily spots the damage done to her car she is very upset because she thinks it is the work of her stalker.<P> Peter does his best to comfort Emily who leans on him a little too hard, which Annie points out to him. Both become suspicious of Emily when further incidents occur and there is no evidence that another person is doing it. Emily also works at the University Medical Imaging Lab where Annie and Peter discover the death to patient ratio is much higher than normal. Peter starts investigating the facility and almost ends up murdered for his efforts.<P> When Peter¿s protégée is arrested for the murder of the person the police think was stalking her, he and Annie know that University Medical Imaging is involved. After looking at the UMI records, the reports show more deaths from patients who used a special MRI at the facility than those who did not. Annie and Peter go into sleuth mode to insure an innocent woman isn¿t framed for murder and the killers who snuffed out the lives of the elderly are brought to justice. <P> Two great lead characters and a strong secondary crew (medical, patient, and otherwise) inside a terse medical thriller will make readers obsess over the works of G.H. Ephron. OBSESSED is a fantastic medical thriller that will appeal to fans of Robin Cook. <P> Harriet Klausner

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 11, 2012

    Loved it!

    Reminds me of the early Robin Cook novels. Very good read!

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