Saturday, July 10, 2010

The Healers: The Aesculapians by Thomas Heric

Genre: Science Fiction Thriller
Series: The Aesculapians Book One
Copyright: 2010
Pages: 592
Book Source: Phenix & Phenix Publicity

It's the year 2021. Medicine has become corporatized, and proprietary treatments are closely guarded secrets. The mysterious Aesculapian Healers offer complete cures of most illnesses with a money-back guarantee, but the outrageous fees have given them a reputation as medical pirates. When recent medical school graduate Wesley Anderson is approached to become a Healer, he reluctantly signs on, hoping to obtain a cure for his father's heart disease and a solution to his family's money troubles. But he soon discovers that there are dark secrets behind the brilliant cures. As Aesculapian practices become increasingly disturbing, a conflicted Wesley-torn between his conscience and the seduction of power-joins a group of dissidents. The atmosphere quickly becomes deadly as they uncover a plan involving human experimentation, and realize that the lives of millions hang in the balance.

This chunkster was quite a surprise; I was initially intrigued by the synopsis and when the book arrived in the mail (all 592 pages of it) a little dismayed at the size. I admit I did cross my fingers and hope it wasn't going to be a long, hard slog. Thankfully that proved not to be the case. I found the medical premise fascinating and was impressed with how the author tied the threads of the Nazi agenda from WWII to the novel setting of 2021.

Thomas Heric's 40 years of medical experience shows, writing medical procedures and trauma with a precision that both fascinated and repulsed me. Be warned some of the experimental practices to further research and gene technology are not for the faint hearted; a bit like watching a car crash ... horrifying and nauseating but you just can't turn away. I found the included emails and memos a bit cryptic, it took me a while to work out the 'who's-who' and their point but that's a minor criticism in the scheme of things. With my nursing background I found the concept of complete cures for illnesses and trauma an incredible thing and not too far from the realms of possiblity but in the hands of those corrupted by money and power, the moral and ethical costs far outweigh the benefits.

If you're going to be an Aesculapian healer, forget about fairness ... Everyone should be treated fairly. Sound familiar to you? It's the biggest crock of bullshit ever foisted on mankind. There's nothing fair about life. Some people are tall and good-looking, others are short, fat, and ugly. Some people have all the smarts, others are as dumb as doorposts. Some people are born into rich families, others are going to suffer a short, protein-deprived life in sub-Saharan Africa. Some people have opportunities galore, while others are screwed from day one. (page 175)

All up, a suspenseful, action-packed read that kept me turning the pages and on reaching the end I was wishing that book 2 was already published. Can't wait to see where the author takes this series.

About the author: Thomas Heric is a practicing physician with more than forty years experience. His other writings include non-fiction, screenplays and episodes of popular television shows including Chicago Hope. Heric resides in Malibu with his wife Paris and is the proud father of five grown children.

This month on The Eclectic Reader one lucky reader can win Linger OR Lady Isabella's Scandalous Marriage OR The Confessions of Catherine de Medici OR Eternal on the Water. Check this blog post for details. International entrants welcome.


  1. Sounds like one I'd enjoy but might have to wait for a while since my list is so long and the book is so big! Glad you enjoyed it and great review!

  2. oooo sounds cool, but yes what a chunkster! :)

  3. It is not a genre that is a favourite of mine but sounds different.

  4. Interesting! Both the premise of the book and your nursing background. This sounds like something I would enjoy so I'll add to my list. Thanks for the marvelous review :)

  5. 592 pages! Woo! I shy away from that size this time of year. Summer calls to me for short reads... like my attention span :) It sounds like you really enjoyed it!

  6. I love a good sci fi book occasionally so I'll make a note of this one. Looks interesting.


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