Rating: 4 stars out of 5
The brilliant but brooding new doctor encounters Copper Point’s sunny nurse-next-door… and nothing can stand in the way of this romance.
Dr. Hong-Wei Wu has come to Copper Point, Wisconsin, after the pressures of a high-powered residency burned him out of his career before he started. Ashamed of letting his family down after all they’ve done for him, he plans to live a quiet life as a simple surgeon in this tiny northern town. His plans, however, don’t include his outgoing, kind, and attractive surgical nurse, Simon Lane.
Simon wasn’t ready for the new surgeon to be a handsome charmer who keeps asking him for help getting settled and who woos him with amazing Taiwanese dishes. There’s no question—Dr. Wu is flirting with him, and Simon is flirting back. The problem is, St. Ann’s has a strict no-dating policy between staff, which means their romance is off the table… unless they bend the rules.
But a romance that keeps them—literally—in the closet can’t lead to happy ever after. Simon doesn’t want to stay a secret, and Hong-Wei doesn’t want to keep himself removed from life, not anymore. To secure their happiness, they’ll have to change the administration’s mind. But what other secrets will they uncover along the way, about Copper Point… and about each other?
I found The Doctor’s Secret (Copper Point Medical #1) by Heidi Cullinan a very sweet, heartwarming new contemporary romance and a wonderful start to a new series. As a long time fan of Cullinan’s stories and characters, I have enjoyed the many nuanced and layered portraits she’s delivered over the years. With the start of this series and The Doctor’s Secret, I found in Hong-Wei another such fascinating and indelible character. Hong-Wei or “Jack” has so many facets to him. Driven perfectionist, competitor, humble and guilt ridden son and man in search of himself and a new future. Also someone proud of his past and his culture as well as his talents as an exceptional doctor. All of which comes through beautifully in Hong Wei the man and and the story.
The story is at its strongest when dealing with the medical aspects through Hong-Wei and the hospital. Whether it’s through his dealings with the staff, his setting up his surgical team, his expectations, and finally all the events that occur that showcase exactly how brilliant Hong Wei truly is….these scenes and sections are a highlight and revelation into part of the hospital drama most people never see. It felt real, unbelievably stressful, and heart pounding.
Also fascinating, Hong-Wei’s attachment to a local Chinese Restaurant, its owners (even though Hong Wei is from Taiwan) and the information about how the workers are shuffled from restaurant to restaurant, their isolation, etc. Sometime else I was unfamiliar with.
As strong a character as Hong-Wei Wu was, the other half ot the main couple, Simon Lane, came across, imo, as the weak link here. Yes, he was sweet, He loves his Asian romances, and is a great nurse. But, he says he loves his town. That’s the reason he never left yet you never get why he loves it. Sure his parents and friends are there. But I never got a real passion for the place out of Simon. Funnily enough, that came from Hong-Wei. He grows to feel grounded there, and the feeling of true love for St. Ann’s, what it could be, all the new friends he’s made, the very town itself? All that passion and love for a location comes from Hong-Wei and not Simon, the very person glued to this town. He also seems to lack the ability to stand up for himself for most of the story, being agreeable when Hong-Wei declares that he will make sure Simon is ‘safe”. I never found his total passivity attractive. Especially next to the character with so much depth and nuance that is Hong-Wei.
It’s even worse when Simon’s friends Owen and Jared have better chemistry with Hong-Wei as well. I suspect those two (separately) wil each have their own romances in the series. I am looking forward to Owen’s especially.
It wrapped up perhaps a little too neatly and quickly for me with the hospital drama although the romance side was a nice touch. I anticipate seeing more of the board drama play out in the future novels in this series. I can’t wait to see which romance comes next in the series. And perhaps more of this couple as well. If you love Heidi Cullinan and contemporary romance, this is a story you will want to have on your list to read.
The cover by Kanaxa is eye catching. The model absolutely works for the character of Hong Wei and the design is simple yet elegant.
ebook, 250 pages
Expected publication: April 23rd 2019 by Dreamspinner Press
Original Title The Doctor’s Secret
Edition Language English
Series Copper Point Medical #1
setting Wisconsin (United States)