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Tom Combs Books In Order

Publication Order of Dr. Drake Cody Suspense Books

Nerve Damage (2014) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Hard to Breathe (2016) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Wrongful Deaths (2018) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Tom Combs is a suspense thriller author and former ER doctor who is best known for the “Dr. Drake Cody Suspense” series. He spent more than twenty-five years working as an ER doctor and this provides the base for his compelling stories that are known for their deadly conflict, high stakes, and flawed and unforgettable characters. He traces his passion for reading to a fantastic teacher who read his third grade writing and encourage him to write. Combs read almost everything he could find in the school library from suspense thrillers, historical fiction, mysteries, science fiction, and adventure works. When he went to college, he was determined to pursue a business degree but ended up graduating with a biochemistry degree from the University of Minnesota that provided the best foundation for a career in medicine. After graduating, he worked all manner of jobs including working heavy machinery, chainsaws, and jackhammers. He was also a security supervisor, technical writer, and biochemistry teaching assistant.

Tom Combs did his internship at Hennepin County Medical Center where he got his induction in the fledgling field of Emergency Medicine. He would then spend three years learning emergency medicine after which he started working as a flight physician at the emergency residency program at the University of Cincinnati. Combs then worked more than two decades in inner-city trauma hospitals where he got a lot of experience and got to know the fascinating characters that people his novels. After more than twenty-eight years in the E,R he suffered an aneurysm that made it impossible for him to continue working in Emergency Medicine. While in recovery, he decided to reawaken his interest in writing and attended a series of seminars at the Minneapolis Loft Literary Center. It was not long before he started writing, drawing from his experiences and the many connections he had made in nearly three decades in medicine. He now spends most of his days writing from the deck of his home in Minnesota while watching wild ducks, bald eagles, and herons.

The lead character of Tom Combs’s “Dr. Drake Cody Suspense” series is a doctor who was once betrayed in love resulting in tragedy. He is now committed to protecting others who have been victimized. Each novel in the series immerses its readers in life or death action while exposing the intrigue and crime in big business, law and health care. Dr. Cody is a medical researcher and emergency room doctor who has to grapple with professional and personal crises. The thing about the Drake Cody novels is that they are suspense thrillers and while the medical element is central, they also have significant aspects of business and law. According to Combs, his characters are not based on actual people he met while working as a doctor but rather amalgams and hybrids. He combines his own experiences and that of helicopter medics, police officers, ambulance paramedics, emergency room doctors and nurses that have dealt with the whole gamut of serious illnesses and accidents in his writing. To this, he adds creativity and imagination to make for some of the most compelling suspense mystery reads.

“Nerve Damage” the first novel of the Drake Cody series opens to the protagonist who has just had a breakthrough as he has developed an experimental drug that provides hope for the paralyzed. But a vicious predator has learned of the experimental drug and is determined to do anything including kill to get his hands on it. Drake is called to the home of his attorney who was representing him in the research for the drug, who has drowned in suspicious circumstances. Things go from bad to worse when one of his colleagues is shot and is brought to the ER in critical condition. He fights to save his friend even as he is fearful that his past is coming back to haunt him. The stakes have never been higher as he soon finds his family dragged into a global firestorm of violence and greed. Together with his wife Rachel, he needs to try and save their children, and themselves. It is an explosive story full of gut-clenching emotion, brilliant twists and heart-pounding thrills with real-life medical action that showcases the dark underbelly of the pharmaceutical industry.

Tom Comb’s “Hard To Breathe” continues the story of Drake Cody, a medical researcher with a hidden past. An injured woman just came to the ER reporting an injury from a fall. Drake does not believe her story and contacts the police suspecting that the woman is the victim of domestic violence from her influential businessman husband. Within hours of his report being submitted, he is facing the threat of losing the patent to his experimental drug and even his medical license. Corruption, murder, and billion-dollar intrigue threatens his life, those he loves and his career. Can he depend on the law to deliver justice or will he fall to the forces that lust for power and are driven by greed. The novel provides an insider’s perspective on the high stakes business of healthcare including the scorching emotions of critical care medicine. It is an intense and fast-paced ride that makes for a great story.

“Wrongful Deaths” the third novel of the Dr. Drake Cody Suspense series opens to patients dying due to what has been alleged to be malpractice. Drake the emergency doctor is working hard to stop the deaths even as the city and his ER are turned into a war zone following an influx of new and very powerful opioid drugs. Murder, overdoses, malpractice and wrongful death follow Dr. Cody. He is facing disaster both as a man and a doctor, particularly when a killer drug takes his loved one and a young patient dies while under his care. Nothing is clear as the police and Drake team up to confront an evil that is hiding in place no one thinks to look. The novel tells of the opioid epidemic and exposes the crime, intrigue, and greed in the business, medical and legal worlds in an action-packed story.

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