Whilst Paul and Kate work alongside each other as doctor and nurse on the surgical ward, strains in their relationship emerge. And when Kate's baby dies and Paul's inexperience costs lives, doubt and despair hang in the air and their marriage appears to be doomed.
However, in a dramatic turn of events, Paul saves the life of a critically ill patient and Kate is finally able to bid an emotional farewell to the child she has lost.
Will their marriage survive the stresses of their hospital work and their past traumas?
Peter Sykes served as a consultant surgeon for 25 years, later becoming the medical director of an NHS Trust, winning a ‘UK Medical Management Team of the Year’ award. During the final three years of his career, he was involved at a national level in the control of quality of surgical services.
Peter’s first novel The First Cut was published in 2011. It described Paul Lambert’s medical misadventures as he was thrown, bewildered and unprepared, onto a busy surgical ward as a newly qualified doctor.
This was followed in 2013 by Behind the Screens which tells real-life tales at a time when care and compassion ruled supreme in British hospitals. Some of the stories are humorous, some sad, others poignant, but all are very ‘human’. The novel also follows Paul’s chequered love life and unveils some of the ‘high jinks’ that doctors get up to when off-duty.
Peter’s third novel First Do Not Harm was published in 2015 and is set against industrial action that beset the NHS in the 1970's, as the normal healthy camaraderie of the City Hospital is lost and the dispute sets nurse against nurse and doctor against doctor.