I've taken eight people hostage in a chicken takeaway - get me a lawyer and a BBC reporter

If you are looking for a well-informed thriller with lots of intrigue and plot twists, or if you enjoy TV medical dramas, you wont be disappointed with Rob McCarthy's debut crime novel The Hollow Men.

The Hollow Men by Rob McCarthy
The Hollow Men by Rob McCarthy

Billed as a must-read for fans of Mark Billingham and Sarah Hilary, the protagonist is Dr Harry Kent, a former Army medic, hospital registrar, police surgeon, drug addict and defender of anyone the world would rather brush aside.

Usually his police work means minor injuries and mental health assessments. But Solomon Idris’s case is different. Solomon Idris has taken eight people hostage in a chicken takeaway, and is demanding a lawyer and a BBC reporter. Harry is sent in to treat the clearly ill teenager... before the siege goes horribly wrong.

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When Solomon’s life is put in danger again from the safety of a critical care ward, it becomes clear he knows something people will kill to protect.

Determined to uncover the secret that drove the boy to such desperate action, Harry soon realises that someone in the medical world, someone he may even know, has broken the doctors’ commandment “do no harm” many times over.

When things turn sour, Harry is forced to save the boy’s life and protect him from further danger – danger that could be close to home and even closer to Harry’s inner circle of fellow doctors.

Rob McCarthy wrote this book while in his fourth year of medical school and, technically, it is superior to many previous medical thrillers I’ve read. I found myself gripped from page one.