Posted in All Book Reviews

A Fast, Easy, and Intriguing Read: Review of A Case of Need by Jeffery Hudson AKA Michael Crichton

Happy New Year Peeps!

A little late on those wishes but, as is often said, better late than never! I actually finished reading A Case of Need at the end of November 2019. I didn’t get around to writing any reviews after the one for The Perfect Mother though (mainly because I spent the last couple of weeks of the year working on my own book).

Anyways… here we are (finally!!).

A Case of Need, written by Michael Crichton, was published under the pen name of Jeffery Hudson. It’s a little different than his later work (the more science-fiction-y stuff), but it is still incredibly interesting.


Medical thriller, Mystery


416 pages


It’s the late 1960s and abortion is illegal in the United States of America. Some doctors, however, like Dr. Arthur Lee, choose to provide the service to needing mothers. When Karen Randal, the daughter of a prominent doctor and part of one of Boston’s medical dynasties dies, Lee is blamed and arrested for a botched abortion. Except, Lee swears he had nothing to do with Karen’s abortion. Dr. John Berry, Lee’s friend and pathologist at the hospital is aware of Lee’s activities and believes his claim. He is determined to prove his friend’s innocence, even if it means going up against the medical elite of the city who could not only break his career without a second thought, but also end his life.

Overall Rating:

8 out of 10


9 out of 10


8 out of 10

Primary Element:

8 out of 10 for its medical detail and 9 out of 10 for its mystery

Writing Style:

8 out of 10

Part of a Series: 


Highlighted Takeaway:

John Berry’s resilience and history. There is a lot more to the character than meets the eys, and his story unfolds well.

What I Liked:

Crichton, as always, balances the science and mystery elements perfectly, delving into the former enough to keep it interesting yet not overwhelming for non-medical readers. As a result, the book reads very much like a mystery with a medical element, rather than medical jargon.

What I Didn’t Like:

While it didn’t bother me specifically, I think the dated-ness of the book may be a turn-off for some readers. There is some sexism within the medical professional and assumed gender roles within couples that is very inherent to the time it was set in (1960s), but that may seem a little cringe-worthy in today’s time.

Who Should Read It:

Anyone who likes the work of Michael Crichton or Robin Cook. This is an easy-to-read, intriguing medical thriller, with a good splash of mystery thrown in that keeps you turning the pages.

Who Should Avoid:

Anyone who does not enjoy books that are technical to an industry like medicine.

Read it for:

Getting into a new genre – A Case of Need may be a good place to start if you’ve never tried medical thrillers and mysteries out because the book isn’t heavy at all.

This was Michael Crichton’s debut, and I can surely say that he got even better with time. I’ve been a fan since I first read Jurassic Park (although my favorite remains Sphere). Now, I’m discovering a whole new genre of novels that he’s written under various pseudonyms, and I’m definitely going to be reading a lot more of his earlier work.

Have you read A Case of Need? Share your thoughts on this medical thriller, other work by Michael Crichton, and even your favorite Crichton book in the comments below. I’d love some recommendations!! And as always, thanks for stopping by and reading my review.

– Rishika



Author and Book Lover

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