Book Review: The Dismantling by: Brian DeLeeuw

Publisher: Plume

Publication Date: April 28, 2015

Origins:  From Publisher for Review

Synopsis: How much of yourself are you willing to sell?

Brian DeLeeuw hits that sweet spot between literary and commercial suspense with his brilliantly adept, ingeniously plotted novel—a chilling, fast-paced drama that urges readers to question the meaning of atonement and whether revenge might sometimes be the only way we can liberate ourselves from our past.

Twenty-five-year-old med school dropout Simon Worth is an organ broker, buying kidneys and livers from cash-strapped donors and selling them to recipients whose time on the waitlist is running out. When a seemingly straightforward liver transplant has an unexpectedly dangerous outcome, Simon finds himself on the run. In order to survive, he must put aside his better moral judgment and place his trust in a stranger who has a shocking secret.

Review: The National Organ Transplant Act (Public Law 98-507) makes it illegal to sell human organs and tissues in the United States. However, this hasn’t stopped Peter DaSilva, who runs Health Solutions. Health Solutions on the surface looks like a company who helps organ donors and recipients find each other – all above board. What Health Solutions really does is organ brokerage – they find those willing to donate organs/tissue for a price. In THE DISMANTLING, Simon Worth is one of the brokers working for DaSilva and he’s been approached by someone who wants to help their friend by buying him a new liver. This is nothing new to Simon and everything seems to go smoothly from start to finish, until the other shoe drops. It turns out the donor isn’t who she says she is and the recipient never wanted to save his own life, so Health Solutions’ illegal operations are balancing precariously to the point where one false move will take down the whole house. THE DISMANTLING is a medical thriller which deftly explores the moral issues surrounding organ procurement. The author uses many ways to tell this tale – from memories, flashbacks, and character back-stories which account for their current motivations, to present day events. I didn’t like many of the characters, but I could understand them. The author created them beautifully human – flawed, scared, and at the very least, morally ambiguous at times. The author has skillfully created an atmosphere of foreboding from the beginning and the twists we’re thrown throughout the story only serve to add more suspense. I think most readers will find THE DISMANTLING an enjoyable suspense story.

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  1. Sounds like an interesting read. I likely would have passed right by it based on the cover/title, but you've snagged my curiosity.


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