The Surgeon's Wife by William H. Coles

ANew Orleans aristocrat and doctor, Clayton Otherson, is an aging national leader in the field of trauma surgery who begins to injure patients with his unacceptable technical and judgmental mistakes. Otherson’s younger partner, Mike Boudreaux, whom he trained and mentored, must discipline him. Otherson resents constrains and criticisms and denies his impairment. Boudreaux complicates his management by falling in love with Otherson’s beautiful wife, Catherine. Otherson’s wrath threatens violence as Boudreaux and Catherine shape their love struggling for respect in the contempt of New Orleans’ society.

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Official review from OnlineBookClub.org

Human nature has always been fascinating to me. What makes people do the things that they do? This is the type of issue that William H. Coles explores in his book The Surgeon's Wife.

Clayton Otherson is a surgeon in New Orleans who mainly does bariatric surgery. He's been making a few mistakes lately, though, forcing Mike Boudreaux to act in his capacity as Chief of Service. Dr. Otherson is a very prominent surgeon who is a forerunner in obesity surgery; he also taught and mentored Dr. Boudreaux. That makes it hard for Mike to make any decisions that might jeopardize Dr. Otherson's career. Then there is Catherine, Clayton's wife. Catherine has always been a strong woman and very active in the community. Now, though, Clayton seems to be coming unglued, and Catherine is unhappy in her marriage. Will Mike make the hard decision that ends Clayton's career? How will Clayton react if the only thing he has ever known is taken away from him? Will Catherine stick it out in her marriage for better times? Or will she walk away?

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Review by Lesley Jones

In The Surgeon’s Wife by William H. Coles, when a renowned professor and surgeon, Clayton Otherson, begins to make critical mistakes in his work with obese patients, he is threatened with misconduct. Chair of the New Orleans hospital committee and fellow surgeon Mike Boudreaux faces a tough moral decision. Does he protect the patient’s safety and take action against his mentor or procrastinate and hope Clayton’s incompetence improves with further training. When Clayton rejects any advice and help, a further operation places a young girl’s life in danger, and her father seeks revenge. Mike now realizes that he has an obligation not only to his patients but to his moral values to ensure Clayton ceases practising. This causes serious complications to their friendship and exposes the rift within Clayton’s marriage to his much younger wife, Catherine. Catherine feels increasingly isolated and turns to Mike for emotional support, leading to an affair that neither of them planned. When Clayton discovers the betrayal, his sense of right and wrong is forgotten; now he wants retribution from everyone who, in his mind, has ruined his life.

I loved the interesting plot and beautifully created characters. Even the minor characters such as Helen were relatable. The story moved forward at a great pace and I thought the conflict between Clayton and Catherine especially riveting. There were many sub-plots which I easily followed and they all played an important role in the moral of this novel. I thought the relationship between Catherine and her mother was especially poignant. Each of the main characters seemed to be facing a moral decision and the development of the consequences of those decisions was played out perfectly, causing great tension. The whole story is a brilliant example of the complexities of human nature and the family dynamic when love, hate, and rejection come into play. The ending is a real cliffhanger and totally unexpected.

Reviewed By Ann Neville for Readers’ Favorite

The Surgeon’s Wife by William H. Coles follows Clayton Otherson, a senior surgeon, as he makes life-threatening mistakes during Bariatric surgery in a New Orleans’ hospital. Mike Boudreaux, the chief of surgery, must discipline Otherson, his partner, colleague, mentor and friend. Even though Mike knows he must take action, he feels conflicted because he owes his education and his career success to Otherson. But when a patient dies from post-operative complications, there is no option but suspension. Otherson turns angry and vindictive, especially when his wife, Catherine, turns to Mike for help and support. Otherson is consumed with revenge and threatens violence. The consequences of the psychological and emotional effects on Catherine and Otherson’s marriage, on their daughter, Mellissa, and on Mike are dramatic and disastrous.

I found The Surgeon’s Wife by William H. Coles an interesting and fascinating read on several levels. Coles skilfully articulates the moral dilemma faced by doctors regarding Bariatric surgery (gastric bypass surgery) and its consequences for patients. The issue of financial gain over patient safety is also well presented, along with the conflict between personal values and corporate economic survival. The psychological and emotional journeys of all the main characters, Otherson, his wife and daughter, and Mike, are intriguing and compelling, while the dramatic ending is completely shocking and, in one aspect, unexpected. Fortunately, the denouement offers an inkling of hope for the future. If a reader is looking for drama in a surgical setting, I recommend this well-written book, The Surgeon’s Wife by William H. Coles.

Reviewed By Ruffina Oserio for Readers’ Favorite

On a personal note, The Surgeon’s Wife is the third book I am reading from William H. Coles within a week, and after I complete each book, I feel like reading more from him. His stories are told in a voice that is confident, clear, and authoritative, and he knows how to explore the deep layers of human emotion. The Surgeon’s Wife, with Coles’ unique signature, features themes of romance, passion, and betrayal and features characters with a solid medical background.

Clayton Otherson is a senior surgeon who has earned the respect of the industry over the years, a man distinguished by his skills. But he makes a life-threatening error in surgery, one that damages the reputation of one of the best hospitals in New Orleans. Now, Mike Boudreaux, the man mentored by Otherson and also his friend, must discipline him. While Mike wants to reduce sanctions and make things easier for Otherson, the committee imposes restrictions. Otherson doesn’t take it well and nurtures thoughts of vengeance. But the experience affects him very negatively to the point that his marriage starts suffering. Catherine, his wife, turns to his best friend and what follows is a romantic relationship between Mike and Catherine. Can Otherson handle it and for how long can they keep the relationship secret?

I loved the conflict and how a major disagreement between two close friends eventually leads to the greatest betrayal. This novel explores how stress and the poor manner of handling a crisis can escalate to very serious and more complex issues. When readers get to know Otherson, they won’t immediately like him. He is a man who doesn’t want to admit his errors or to face a problem. But as the narrative moves forward, they begin to gain sympathy for him and wonder why he must go through the pain he is experiencing. The conflict reaches a point of climax when his wife finally chooses his friend, the very person he had hoped can help in his situation. The narrative is skillfully done and the author explores the consequences of illicit relationships, the dangers of quick and emotional decisions, with Catherine losing respect from her peers and family. William H. Coles keeps one reading until the very last page.

Reviewed By Janelle Alex, Ph.D. for Readers’ Favorite

A refreshing read, The Surgeon’s Wife takes readers on a fictional journey that will keep them intrigued from the beginning. William H. Coles’ dramatic tale is based around the lives of two prominent surgeons and one woman. The issues that arise in The Surgeon’s Wife start off with one of the main characters, Clayton Otherson, making a major mistake during surgery. His former student and the current chair of the OR committee, Mike Boudreaux, tries to protect his mentor, but ethically and professionally he knows he must protect the patients. Eventually, a love triangle comes into play and Mike and Catherine Otherson, Clayton’s wife, become lovers. With numerous challenges facing both the Othersons and Mike, The Surgeon’s Wife will keep readers on tenterhooks from start to finish.

For the most part, William H. Coles’ story progresses at a cadence that feels smooth and interesting. The romantic relationship between Mike and Catherine jumps ahead pretty quickly – but not until nearly halfway through the book – and with little anticipation of it earlier in the plot. But, overall, The Surgeon’s Wife is so intriguing that this minor issue remains just that – a minor issue. Coles makes the story more realistic by allowing some patients to actually die even after having given readers a chance to like them. He also displays examples of doctors trying to stick together and protect one of their own, even at the risk of patients’ lives. Sexism is still yet another aspect fluidly blended into The Surgeon’s Wife, from how doctors’ wives are often treated to how female surgeons are treated. William H. Coles’ The Surgeon’s Wife is filled with an in-depth plot, powerful characters, and a lot of fascinating different topics that could be proposed for discussion via a book club or with friends. The Surgeon’s Wife is a great read and one I recommend.

Reviewed By Rabia Tanveer for Readers’ Favorite

The Surgeon’s Wife by William H. Coles is the story of Mike Boudreaux, Chief of Service at a hospital in New Orleans, who is at a standstill. His teacher, his mentor, and his good friend, Clayton Otherson, has made life-threatening mistakes during surgery and now it is Mike’s job to discipline him. However, Mike is having a hard time doing his job. On the one hand, he has his duty and on the other, he has to think about his friend who made him who he is today. To make matters worse, he falls in love with Clayton’s wife Catherine, who also falls for Mike. Together they are happy, but their community and Clayton don’t like their happiness. It is now up to Mike to find a way to hold on to his life, his success, and Catherine while also doing his job.

The Surgeon’s Wife by William H. Coles is the story of a man’s battle with his sense of responsibility, his ethical duty, and his heart. This book was definitely a change of theme and genre for me. Usually, I read novels with younger protagonists, but this was a good change. The older, more mature characters started in a half or almost fully developed stage, but they still grew. I enjoyed reading about a different age group and understanding what goes on in their minds. This was a different setting for me, but I enjoyed it very much. I loved Mike’s development. From being a great doctor and a hesitant Chief, he grew to become a leader. Catherine had my sympathies from the very beginning, but I loved how she grew taller and prouder of her choices. I really enjoyed this book.


Review from OnlineBookClub.org
The Surgeon’s Wife is a book that starts off as just another story of several medical practioners whose lives are intertwined in their daily hustles of making other people’s lives better either by way of medicine or surgical procedures. However, as the author delves deep into these doctors’ lives, it turns out to be a really interesting read as most of the people in the book have quite a dramatic lifestyle both in their line of work and in their personal lives outside of the hospital.
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Review from OnlineBookClub.org
Surgeon’s wife is a must read. It has a well-developed plot, although short, each page leaves you wanting more and you can’t wait to turn the next page. I rate the book 4 out of 4 stars. I could not find any error in the book meaning it had a professional edition. I recommend this book to young adults. They should understand the consequences of ignoring part of their life. They should learn how to balance their lives and be better adults when they finally get married. I can read the book a hundred times without getting bored, so get your copy and discover the story!
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Review from OnlineBookClub.org
Personally, this book has taught me that nothing is ever what it seems and that there is more to life than a successful career and loads of money. The characters in the book are well defined and each and everyone plays a major role in developing this story. A Surgeon’s wife is one of the most tragic stories I have ever read. In the beginning of the story, there was a lot of medical jargon and I got a bit lost but eventually I gained my composure, and the the rest of the story was intelligible. Michael’s success story was very inspiring, despite coming from a humble background and being raised by a single mother, he worked very hard by giving it his all. It shows that being committed and focused on your goals, eventually pays off, and where you come from doesn’t necessarily determine where you are going. The issue of alcohol and substance abuse is also addressed, and the successful rehabilitation of Helen is quite motivating.

There are numerous lessons to be learnt from the characters in this story. Since Otherson financially supported the hospital, top management willingly turned a blind eye to his growing inefficiency which resulted in the loss of a life. It is heartbreaking knowing that this sequence of events is happening daily in our own societies. Wealthy individuals conveniently exchanging money to cover up their failures, and the less fortunate individual paying dearly, sometimes with their life. I rate this book 4 out of 4 stars because its relatable, emotional, inspiring and very well written. This book is ideal for anyone that appreciates fiction.

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Review from OnlineBookClub.org
“The Surgeon’s Wife” by William H. Coles is a literacy drama with romance and medical elements that create originality and keeps the story addicting to read. It is a story most people can relate to. Not wanting to put the book down, since it is so interesting, and wants the reader to continue flipping the pages. The author Coles did an awesome job telling this tale as if it this really happened in the real world. A great read that captivates every moment, and highlights the issues going on. The chapters are very easy to read, and the words are very well written and the story is very descriptive as the rising plot of the book dives right in. Cole indulges the readers by starting off with the main characters known as Mike and Clayton whose tempestuous relationship shapes the events of this uproaring novel.
The Surgeon’s Wife is a really interesting book that I instantly got hooked on and would read it again! I give this story a 4/4, so yes I highly recommend this one.

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Review from OnlineBookClub.org
There were some beautiful lessons featured in the story. Such as, multiple surgeries can have adverse effects to the patient that could lead to death. Don’t trust people who say they’d never do a particular errand or task, because people change as time changes. I also learned that some people live in an unhappy marriage life, they feel neglected and ignored by their mates and they wonder whether there is TRUE love. Honesty and freeness of speech in a relationship is vital to keep the bond strong. You can never serve two masters, either you’ll love one and hate the other. For instance, Clayton was overly committed to his work that he had less or no time for his family.

I rate the book at 4 out of 4 stars. I love medical related articles or stories, and the book didn’t disappoint me. The writing was easy to understand and it was well composed. I didn’t notice grammar errors in the writing. The book is ideal for everyone because the author accommodated diverse events that touched some relatable aspects of life.

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