Item description for The HMO, Murder By Referral by M. Buckler Stephen...
Joe Brock is skeptical when he reads a tabloid report about a "Grim Reaper" methodically stalking and killing homeless people in San Francisco. When he witnesses a murder, he knows the reports are true. Who could possibly gain from such bizarre crimes? Joe convinces himself that it's a coincidence that the HMO he works for is being bankrupted by the poor souls. Sure the HMO's execs are an assortment of greedy, unethical corporate ne'er-do-wells, but MURDER??? After Joe becomes the prime suspect, is arrested for the crime, and someone tries to kill him; he has no choice but to help bring the killer to justice.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9.1" Width: 6.1" Height: 0.6" Weight: 1 lbs.
Release Date Aug 22, 2006
Publisher Fifth Estate
ISBN 1933580305 ISBN13 9781933580302
Reviews - What do customers think about The HMO, Murder By Referral?
a medical conspiracy with some truly zany characters Jan 1, 2008
Stephen Buckler's "The HMO Murder By Referral" is the story of how CIO Joe Brock stops the Grim Reaper, the murderer of over a hundred homeless people, and saves himself from being framed for the crimes.
Through the chicanery of one of their salespersons and the incompetency of their executives, Joe's company, The HMO, has won California and Arizona's statewide healthcare contract. But then a bunch of homeless people start requiring expensive heart valve replacement surgery. This threatens to bankrupt The HMO.
When eyewitness accounts of the Grim Reaper appear in the tabloids, Brock grows suspicious of his executives, and determines to uncover the truth. With the help of some cool characters, Brocks works around his bumbling coworkers and a corrupt police force to stop the killings.
Brock never does figure out what really happened, but it's quite a ride for the reader to follow his adventures with a half-bald tabloid reporter, a shabbily-dressed cop who swears with PG-rated gosh darnits, and the witch-from-hell girlfriend/employee who's willing to step on his back to take his job.
Buckler's characters are over-the-top, and the writing contains quite a few typos and telling instead of showing. However, the story is coherent and the plot is easy to follow. Although it took almost until the end before Joe Brock gained my sympathy, Buckler kept me reading.
Buckler's got an interesting medical conspiracy story in here, with a surprise (at least to me) villain at the end.
One last thing: Buckler has a habit of using outlandish similes, which at first put me off, but then I got into them and started laughing out loud (my wife thought I was going nuts). Anticipating them and then reading them out loud really made reading this novel a lot of fun. I've included some samples below... - "as persistent as a teenage boy at the drive-in" - "as surprised as a preacher walking in on his wife boinking the local pornography dealer" - "like a fork squashed stack of hot-cakes with a little raspberry centered on top"
***but you've gotta read "The HMO Murder By Referral" if you want more***
SMB Does It Again Oct 29, 2007
Wow, another page turner. I have read both of Stephen M Buckler (SMB) books and I like his writing style. He writes using simple words not to confuse the average reader. I hate an author that uses a bunch of fancy long words that I don't know the meaning to. He does use some profanity but only when it's called for and the book has no explicit sexual references to my knowledge. I have met SMB personally and he is a very kind and considerate person who took the time to autograph my books for me. I highly recommend his two books.
The HMO Feb 20, 2007
This is the second book I have read by Mr. Buckler. He has a good story line and makes his characters very believable. I am looking forward to his next novel.