4 out of 4 stars
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William H. Cole’s McDowell is an enthralling story about a respected surgeon who has climbed to the top of his career; however, the things he has done to get there are at times questionable and immoral. Hiram is the surgeon who the story focuses on. He is an astute surgeon who is respected and admired by many, at one point he is even elected to become a member of the president’s cabinet. That is until tragedy strikes and Hiram makes a choice that may be the end of his career. It is up to Hiram whether or not he can redeem himself for all the wrongs he has done in his past and possibly build a life for himself again.
Although the story focuses around Hiram there are many other characters in this novel that are pivotal to the plot, such as his daughter’s Sophie and Anne, and his son Billy. There is also the reporter Paige who also is a huge character in this book. All these characters were well written and played major roles in the plot of the book, as well as who Hiram was, who he becomes, and his actions.
The first half of the book focuses on Hiram’s wrong doings, the people he has wronged, and everything that lead up to his demise in his mission for power. During this time Hiram shows love for his children in some unorthodox and unconventional ways. With that being said you can still see that Hiram has love for his children, even though he may not always show it. The second half of the book focuses on Hiram’s path to redemption and the interesting people he meets along the way.
A large portion of the book also focuses on Hiram’s children and their dilemmas they face due to their father’s quest for power and some of the people he has harmed. Hiram was not always a likeable character. In fact Hiram is very egotistical and treats those closest to him very poorly; nevertheless, as the story goes on we begin to see a shift in Hiram, and although he is still not one hundred percent likeable, there are some redeeming qualities about him. Hiram’s daughter Sophie is a very likeable character and we see her grow throughout the story as well. When we first meet Sophie she is a young woman who is not going very far in her career and is constantly being taken advantage of. We see Sophie throughout the story grow into a strong woman who stays loyal to those she cares about. We also see Hiram’s son Billy grow from an immature teenager to a great man and a great father.
These are just some of the character’s you will find in William Cole’s book, there are many more throughout the story who add a lot of depth to the story; however, I would hate to give away anything for those who plan to read it in the future. I will say there is a very wise bookstore owner who Hiram meets, a musician, a painter, and a hotel owner. All of these people are all part in Hiram’s redemption. This book may seem like your typical book of one trying to find themselves and do better, except this is not the case at all. This book kept me on my toes till the very end, and there was never a dull moment.
This book would appeal to those who like mystery and crime stories. This book would also suit those who are into books about forgiveness, human nature, and redemption. There are some strong scenes in this book, therefore, I would not recommend this book to young children. With that being said I think a mature teenager would be able to handle this book as well. It appears as though the book was professionally edited, as I did not notice any errors. This book was a page turner that kept me guessing till the very end, because of this, along with the reasons stated above I would rate this book a 4 out of 4 stars. This book would be great for anyone looking for a good story on love, family, mistakes, and creating a new future.
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