Mind Changer

He spent his time reading
by James White | Science Fiction & Fantasy |
ISBN: 9780312866631 Global Overview for this book
Registered by wingGoryDetailswing of Nashua, New Hampshire USA on 1/14/2020
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Journal Entry 1 by wingGoryDetailswing from Nashua, New Hampshire USA on Tuesday, January 14, 2020
I got this ex-library hardcover from Better World Books. It's another entry in the marvelous "Sector General" series about a space hospital and its staff dealing with the physical and psychological problems of ailing aliens of many different types.

This book focuses on Sector General's boss and chief psychologist, Major O'Mara (introduced in a story in Hospital Station), whose many years of work (and grouchiness) have helped turn the hospital into the galactic success that it is - while making most of its residents think of O'Mara as a terrifying He Who Is To Be Obeyed. But O'Mara is due for retirement, and is tasked with choosing and training his successor - with the nod that he can take as long as he wants, so if he really didn't want to retire just yet he had the OK to let the process drag on. But as we find out via flashbacks, O'Mara does have something he'd like to do with his life post-Sector-General - if only he can make his choice AND prevent a growing plague of xenophobia from disrupting all he's worked for.

I really enjoyed this one, not least because of the things it revealed about the usually-taciturn O'Mara and his private life - and because it touched on so many characters and incidents from previous books. Among them: the leading candidates include Cha Thrat, introduced in her own viewpoint novel Code Blue - Emergency, and Lioren, the troubled and suicidal surgeon whose story unfolded in The Genocidal Healer. Other favorite characters are involved as well, from Conway and Murchison to the insectlike empath Prilicia. And the story ranges from the medical mystery to some flashback episodes of extreme heroism by O'Mara under very challenging circumstances.

As for O'Mara's personal life - well, he does find some sympathetic company on a forced R&R trip, but another relationship developed due to his work at Sector General, one that transcends species. The reveal on that one really touched me!

[There's a TV Tropes page for the "Sector General" series, with some entertaining tidbits.]

Released 1 mo ago (7/13/2020 UTC) at Little Free Library, Twin Bridges Park in Merrimack, New Hampshire USA

WILD RELEASE NOTES:

Guidelines for safely visiting and stocking Little Free Libraries during the COVID-19 pandemic, from the LFL site here.

I was pleased to find the Twin Bridges parking area open again after a lengthy closure due to the pandemic (and, later, to repaving). Dropped this book off in the Little Free Library, where I saw quite a few other BC releases, so the pickings are good just now. Hope someone enjoys the book!

[See other recent releases in NH here.]

*** Released for the 2020 Seeking Septads challenge. ***

*** Released for the 2020 Science Fiction challenge. ***

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