'Lifelines'

The emergency room, as we all know from television, is a very dramatic, high-energy place. (Oddly, in the handful of times I’ve been there in real life, it’s been pretty quiet, not much going on except really boring television and people waiting, waiting, waiting for their names to be called. Maybe I’ve just gone at the wrong—or is it the right?—times.)

The ER at the fictional Angels of Mercy Medical Center, the setting for CJ Lyons’ fast-paced, action-packed debut novel, Lifelines, lives up to this reputation, and then some.

Lyons’ heroine, Lydia Fiore, is a new attending physician who has just moved to Pittsburgh, bringing tremendous expertise from her last job at an L.A. hospital. On her first day, however, she loses a patient, the son of the hospital’s chief of surgery, and now the father wants her fired.

Turns out the son was a gay-rights activist, and there are people who might have wanted him dead. And before you know it, there are more suspicious deaths, and they seem to keep happening when Lydia is around, which doesn’t bode well for her job. (On the bright side, there’s a very cute paramedic who flirts insistently with Lydia, so the move to Pittsburgh isn’t all bad news. Though given the statistics about single life here, this may be the book’s most unlikely plot point. I refer you to Cathy Day’s book, reviewed above.)

The story moves among Lydia and three other young women in the ER: Amanda, a med student struggling with the demands of her emergency rotation; Gina, a fashionista resident out to prove herself; and Nora, the charge nurse who makes sure things runs smoothly, at work if not in her home life. As events unfold at a rapid pace, the women come to respect and depend on each other, professionally and personally.

CJ Lyons, pen name for a writer-physician who did an internship at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, says some cases in her story reflect her experiences and those of co-workers. Let’s hope that’s limited to the medical procedures; the rest is more drama than belongs even in the ER (though not, perhaps, on “ER”).


Lifelines by CJ Lyons; Berkley Books; $7.99

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module
Edit Module

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module Edit ModuleShow Tags

On the Blogs


2024 Eclipse Will Be Even More Impressive in Pittsburgh

2024 Eclipse Will Be Even More Impressive in Pittsburgh

Don’t toss out those eclipse glasses, you will need them again.

Comments


All the foodie news that's fit to blog
Watch: Pittsburgh's Italian Chefs Cook Up an Amazing BBQ

Watch: Pittsburgh's Italian Chefs Cook Up an Amazing BBQ

The fire-cooked meal organized by Justin Severino and Hilary Prescott Severino, included dishes prepared by chefs from Pittsburgh’s Italian restaurant community.

Comments


Not just good stuff. Great stuff.
Best Places for Kids on Rainy Days in Pittsburgh

Best Places for Kids on Rainy Days in Pittsburgh

Read on for some under-the-radar ideas on how you and the kids can survive a rainy day this summer.

Comments


Time-Travel Drinking: Why We Need an '80s Bar

Time-Travel Drinking: Why We Need an '80s Bar

The case for an establishment where one can dine and drink while truly believing it's 1987.

Comments


Mike Prisuta's Sports Section

A weekly look at the games people are playing and the people who are playing them.
Steelers Are a ‘Close Group’ Still Seeking an Identity

Steelers Are a ‘Close Group’ Still Seeking an Identity

The team looks good on paper, good in practice and even, uncharacteristically, good so far in the preseason. But very soon now, none of that will matter.

Comments


Style. Design. Goods. Hide your credit card.
#Gottahaveit: Take It To the Hoop

#Gottahaveit: Take It To the Hoop

Robert Hallett, Goldsmith, handcrafts the jewelry in his Oakmont shop.

Comments


The movies that are playing in Pittsburgh –– and, more importantly, whether or not they're worth your time.
A Hitman and His Bodyguard Get Into Trouble (No Need to Overcomplicate Things)

A Hitman and His Bodyguard Get Into Trouble (No Need to Overcomplicate Things)

Reviews of "The Hitman's Bodyguard" and "Wind River," plus local movie news and notes.

Comments


Everything you need to know about getting married in Pittsburgh today.
Popping the Question Far Away from Home

Popping the Question Far Away from Home

Three grooms share how they carried their rings long distances to keep their brides-to-be in the dark until the moment they got on one knee.

Comments


Weekly inspiration for your home from the editors of Pittsburgh Magazine
Bombs Away: Arsenal 201 Apartments Open After Cannonball Removal

Bombs Away: Arsenal 201 Apartments Open After Cannonball Removal

Months after the Civil War-era cannonballs were discovered at the former arsenal and munitions factory in Lawrenceville, residents are given the green light to move into the 243-unit apartment complex.

Comments


The hottest topics in higher education
Tuition Increases at the University of Pittsburgh

Tuition Increases at the University of Pittsburgh

School trustees voted this week to increase tuition for in-state and out-of-state students.

Comments

Edit Module

Edit Module