Carol Cassella combines her expertise as a medical doctor with mystery and romance in her novel – Gemini. Although the title suggests twins, and the author’s bio on the back flap notes that she is the mother of two sets of twins, the resolution of the mystery was not predictable.
The love story involves Bo, a good-looking rich kid with a strange medical issue, who falls in love with Raney, a talented artist from the other side of the tracks. Bo disappears abruptly from her life twice; the second time, Raney marries her boyfriend, a hard-working and loving Filipino fisherman. All is slowly revealed as Raney lies in a coma, initially as a Jane Doe, in the intensive care unit of Seattle’s Beacon Hospital, under the care of Dr. Charlotte Reese. Charlotte and her boyfriend, Eric, a writer who is researching genetic abnormalities for a new book, have their own problems; both have ticking clocks – she wants a baby and he is in remission after three brain surgeries. Eventually they are tied to the woman in the coma, and her 12 year-old son.
Heavy with medical terminology (the author is an anesthesiologist), the story alternates between Charlotte’s internal conflicts as she tries to save her patient and the backdrop of a young Raney and Bo as they grow into adulthood. As the omniscient reader, you will know more about Raney that Charlotte does, as the plot quickly escalates to finding someone who can take responsibility for Raney’s unconscious body. The surprises are predictable as the lives unwind, but the resolution of paternity has a unique medical explanation that had me googling the possibilities – yes, it could be true.
Gemini is a fast suspenseful page-turner, with enough plot twists to keep me reading quickly to the end.