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REVIEW: The Nurse He Shouldn’t Notice by Susan Carlisle

With his heart on the line will it be fight…or flight?

Dr. Court Armstrong is running from the past, a flight that takes him straight to the doorstep of a Ghanaian hospital and Nurse Maggie Everett. Working with firebrand Maggie is a challenge Court relishes every second of, but he’s in her world now–and he’ll have to keep his distance if he wants his heart to survive intact….

Dear Ms. Carlisle,

Recently I watched a documentary on Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders). It delved into the challenges, frustrations, triumphs and day to day existence of the medical teams that were in several African nations at the time. When I read the blurb for your latest book, “The Nurse He Shouldn’t Notice” the fact that at least part of it would be set in Ghana caught my eye. I’ve been meaning to try more of the Harlequin Medical line and this seemed a perfect place to begin.

I love the details about working in the clinics and hospital. Also about Ghana and its people. Just as in the documentary, the high stress of working in isolation and without access to the equipment and medicines that these western trained doctors know would save lives is shown. But these people can also let loose and party a little when they have the chance and they seem truly dedicated to what they’re doing.

Maggie and Court are both wounded souls. Maggie lost her fiance due to her injuries from a car crash that made her infertile. Court has lost a twin brother to third world medical conditions and had a terrible outcome for one of his patients at home. Both have tried to wall themselves off from caring too much about people anymore – don’t let someone close and you won’t feel any pain from them. This part of the book is pretty much standard and same old. We all know these two will find what they need in each other. It’s just watching them realize it – two steps forward and one back. They trade their innermost fears and what keeps them solo. They lust a little. More trading of their inner selves. More lusting helped along by clothes that they wet to keep themselves hydrated. One last big exchange of personal info and a blazing thunderstorm opens the way for two people to give into temptation for what they both acknowledge will be only a bit of sexing.

NurseOnly of course it’s not as neither is satisfied with only one night. But then we knew that was coming. Medical emergencies lead them back to Boston where Court must face his past, lay demons to rest and decide what he wants for his life. There’s a lot he has to work through but the page count of the book makes sure he does it very quickly before the final commitment and exchange of “I love yous.”

The writing here is good, the characters are sort of stock but well drawn stock. The resolution of Court’s lifelong issues comes quickly. I was more believing that Maggie had moved past hers and was already in a mental place where she was ready to commit. The parts I enjoyed the most were the medical ones. I appreciate the work it looks like you went to in order to get all this correct. I could follow what’s going on without being lost in jargon or situations beyond my knowledge. If Court and Maggie had been a little more original this would have been higher than a C+ grade for me.


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Another long time reader who read romance novels in her teens, then took a long break before started back again about 15 years ago. She enjoys historical romance/fiction best, likes contemporaries, action- adventure and mysteries, will read suspense if there's no TSTL characters and is currently reading very few paranormals.


  1. Lady Jaye
    Sep 22, 2012 @ 11:39:08

    Does the nurse live and work in Ghana or is she Ghanaian? Everett?

  2. Jayne
    Sep 22, 2012 @ 11:46:00

    @Lady Jaye: She’s an American who has moved to Ghana and, as of the close of the book, plans to stay there.

  3. maria
    Sep 23, 2012 @ 12:02:03

    The fact that this book is set in Ghana has me intrigued. I spent 3 weeks there last summer on an Engineers Without Borders project. (Which is an entirely separate entity from doctors without borders, but with similar goals) But I’ve never been interested in medicals, and the c+ grade has me wary. Maybe the library?

  4. Another Review for The Nurse He Shouldn’t Notice | Susans Blog
    Sep 23, 2012 @ 18:13:16

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