The Surgeon is the first novel in the Rizzoli and Isles series by Tess Gerritsen. It was recommended to me not just as a reader, but as something to read as a writer. Gerritsen creates compelling, multidimensional characters that you love and hate at the same time. She weaves subplots easily into the main storyline. She creates surprises. The pace is amazing. A 350 page paperback does not take a lot of time to read, as the story grips you.
Characters are always what keeps me reading a story. I really connected with Catherine Cordell and Thomas Moore. They were amazing. Catherine was so quietly strong and defiant. She went through something horrible, beyond horrible, and though it took time, she worked through it. I loved Detective Moore. He was strong, caring and vulnerable. He was practically the perfect man, though his flaws made him seem more real. I was drawn to him, wanting to know his reactions and his thoughts on everything.
Then there was Jane Rizzoli. I disliked her, but admired her. She was a woman working in a man's world. She endured mean-spirited pranks, and purposefully being left out. She was full of resentment, family issues and had a chip on her shoulder the size of a boulder. As I was reading the novel, I couldn't believe this was the character the series would be based on. Yet, I could also understand it. More than Catherine and Moore, Rizzoli has the most room to grow. She learned about herself and others in this novel, and I'm interested to see what else she learns.
I haven't seen the Rizzoli and Isles television show. I watched way too many police procedurals, and I'm still not over it. That being said, I've seen the actress who plays Rizzoli on the show. Angie Harmon is gorgeous and tall, with beautiful hair. That is not what the Rizzoli of the novels looked like. Of course, they changed it for television. But that's not the only difference. In the first Rizzoli and Isles novel, there is NO ISLES. Where is she? When does she enter the series? In the next novel, right? So, while I might not be watching police dramas, I will definitely be reading them. One book and I know I will read more about Jane Rizzoli and hopefully soon be reading about Maura Isles.