Author: M.K. York
Publisher: Carina Press
Genre: MM Doctors
Summary: In the high-intensity world of hospital residency programs, there’s no room for romance. So it’s a good thing for first-year surgical resident Neil Carmona that his crush on the gorgeous cardiologist Eli Newcombe is sheer fantasy. Not only is the sexy doctor Neil’s superior, he’s also recently divorced.
As Neil’s skill as a surgeon grows, so does his friendship with Eli, and his silent, hopeless longing for more. It isn’t until Neil’s final year that Eli at last admits his own deepest desires. But Neil’s joy is short-lived: Eli has no intention of pursuing a relationship. Their positions in the hospital would make it unethical, even if he was emotionally ready for someone new.
Wounded and furious, Neil is determined to forget about Eli once and for all. But when a near-tragedy strikes, a new question arises: Is a life without love—without Neil—a greater risk than laying his heart on the line?
Review: Necessary Medicine is by a new author, M.K. York. I have noted mixed reviews on the book While I can see why others weren’t captivated by this story, mainly because while it is a ultimately a romance, it is even more a story of becoming a doctor. There are a lot of medical details, hospital workings and the absolute exhaustion that comes from residency. For me, a fan of medical autobiographies, this made it even better. I loved the medical details, the intricacies of Neil and his friends surviving surgery residency and slow developing into a friendship and maybe more with Eli, the cardiologist. Having been a medical transcriptionist in the past, I had no problems with the medical terminology but readers unfamiliar with medical may have issues with that.
If you are looking for a hot smexy time, this isn’t the story for you. It is a very slow romance, with Neil crushing/lusting after Eli right away but becoming friends and working together. The majority of the story concerns Neil navigating his way through residency while adding extra work in the form of an initiative committee in order to work with Eli. For his part, Eli is divorced and looking for a friend in Neil.
To be honest, the romance aspect of this book only takes place at the very end. We get the medical issues, a side plot of the struggles of Neil’s friend, Mark, and also his mentor, Pete. I loved both these aspects but again, they didn’t contribute to the romance. These showcase more the struggles of becoming and of being a doctor and show the loyal friend that Neil is. I loved Pete so much. He’s down to earth, funny and so supportive of Neil. That Eli happens to be Pete’s best friend just makes it work more.
Since the story is told from Neil’s POV, we get to know him well but have to work a little harder to know and understand what Eli is about. It’s worth it though and the author definitely made him human, making mistakes and missteps but trying his best to work it all out. I did appreciate that while Eli may never have been with a man before Neil, he wasn’t unaware of who he is. I also appreciated that his ex-wife, Tricia, was not painted as some wicked evil harpy, as so often happens. She’s great enough that Neil likes her!
Once Neil and Eli start making progress towards each other, it isn’t smooth sailing but I could understand the why of it.
The true romantic parts come at the end, with an epilogue sweet enough to make me happy. I would recommend this to readers aware that it is more medically based than romance, but I myself enjoyed it thoroughly.