Doctor Tampers with Brain Chemistry

By Wolfe, Reviewed Peter | St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO), September 22, 1996 | Go to article overview

Doctor Tampers with Brain Chemistry


Wolfe, Reviewed Peter, St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)


THE KINDLING EFFECT

A medical thriller by Peter Hernon

373 pages, William Morrow & Co., $24 `THE KINDLING EFFECT" takes its life from a growing interest among forensic pathologists in the use of neurotransmitters to control violence and crime. This interest makes good sense. Cities have become more dangerous; prisons are overcrowded; the age of first offenders has been dropping. Wouldn't everybody profit if the personalities of psychopaths were altered? Peter Hernon's Dr. Robert Hartigan thinks so. And what he thinks matters. Hartigan is a world-class specialist in brain dysfunction who runs a clinic renowned for its work in treating psychopathic behavior. Early into the action, the research psychologist John Brook achieves his greatest professional wish by being invited to join the St. Louis-based Hartigan Clinic. But his euphoria sours quickly. Brook learns that he has been hired to replace a staffer who was killed by a clinic patient. Nor does his discovery that an insider helped the killer escape from his cell sweeten Brook's mood. "The Kindling Effect" shows that the noblest motives can lead to the vilest crimes. Hernon's handling of this irony enriches his plot. For instance, so intent is a clinic doctor in stopping Hartigan from tampering with his patients' brain chemistry that he plans to kill him. But do these homicidal plans make Hartigan's would-be killer a public benefactor or a villain who must be stopped? Writing in clear, energized prose, Hernon grabs the reader's attention quickly and then holds it. The murder that occurs in the book's opening chapter creates an excitement that he helps sustain through the device of intercutting. By moving from one set of characters to another, he speeds the plot, builds social and moral depth and introduces a winning blend of irony and suspense, since the characters who develop a given scene can't know what their predecessors did in the last one to help or hurt their chances. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Doctor Tampers with Brain Chemistry
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.