Book Review – Risk Factor


Title: Risk Factor

Author: Charles Atkins

Genre: Mystery, Thriller

Length: 292

Rating: 3 Star


Dr. Molly Katz is a resident physician in a psychiatric unit for young adolescents. When a nurse on the unit is knifed to death, and the obvious perpetrator is the heretofore gentle Jonathan, Molly is badly shaken. How could she have missed the symptoms of such behavior? When the boy, now catatonic, is removed to a hospital for the criminally insane, Molly moonlights there in order to keep an eye on her former patient and his treatment.Then another nurse is murdered. Other patients in the unit are suspected. A hair-raising denouement puts Molly and her children near death and bares the crucial question — is the murderer irrevocably evil, born soulless, uncaring about any living thing?

Dr. Atkins is well equipped to dramatize the question that engages so many faced with heinous crime — the existence of pure evil.


I present to you the standard mystery/thriller/crime kind of book. I picked it up from a bargain bin for $3 at Big W (a bin I think last until all the books in it are gone so I would go check your closest one out) because I thought the story sounded good. Its been awhile since I have read a more… adult book I suppose. It was the part that it takes place around psychiatric hospital and patients that hooked me.

Now there wasn’t anything all that wrong so to say with this book that leaves it at a 3 star, its just that it was not as thrilling as I wanted it to be. Picture pretty much any kind of crime book and thats what you get. In a way I liked it for this because it was a god easy yet more adult read to some of the other things I have been reading lately. I got what I expected, thank you book.

In terms of plot and what mystery it actually has it tries to keep you on your toes. It presents you with a patient that cant even feed himself for a good chunk of it as the murder, but luckily our main character Molly is too clever to fall for such a thing and doesn’t buy it and soon as others thinking the same way too. We are then present with another patient who is super violent and not loved by our Doctor at all and most the people are screaming this guy did it! But its just so obviously trying to misdirect you that its no surprise when it turns out to be some random that isn’t mentioned all that much things considered. I don’t know how I would have felt if it had actually been the second one, it would have been a surprise but not a good one.

For the most part the characters are likeable. They are all very simple and straight forward, much like the rest of the book, but I personally liked them and didn’t want this person to die or this person to be found guilty or become more bonkers than they already were.

A romance is kind of thrown into the book, and though it didn’t hurt it it wasn’t really needed either. It was just a little side things thats there.

So there you go. Easy read, you read the description and look at the cover and you kind of know what you are in for. If you like mystery/thriller kind of books I think you will enjoy this one well enough.

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