Island Prac­tice

  • From the Publisher
May 13, 2013
This is the spir­it­ed, true sto­ry of a col­or­ful, con­trar­i­an doc­tor on the world-famous island of Nan­tuck­et. Thir­ty miles out to sea, in a strik­ing­ly off­beat place known for wealthy sum­mer peo­ple but also home to inde­pen­dent-mind­ed, idio­syn­crat­ic year-rounders, Dr. Tim­o­thy Lep­ore holds the life of the island, often quite lit­er­al­ly, in his hands. He’s sur­geon, med­ical exam­in­er, foot­ball team doc­tor, tick expert, unof­fi­cial psy­chol­o­gist, acci­den­tal homi­cide detec­tive, and occa­sion­al vet­eri­nar­i­an. He’s treat­ed Jim­my Buf­fett, Chris Matthews, and Kennedy rel­a­tives, but he makes house calls for any­one and lets peo­ple pay him noth­ing — or any­thing: oat­meal raisin cook­ies, a weath­er-beat­en .44 Mag­num, a pic­ture of a Nepalese shaman. Lep­ore can be con­tro­ver­sial and con­tra­dic­to­ry, espous­ing con­ser­v­a­tive views while per­form­ing abor­tions and giv­ing patients mar­i­jua­na cook­ies. He has unusu­al hob­bies: he’s a gun fanat­ic, road­kill col­lec­tor, and con­coc­ter of pas­times like knit­ting dog-hair sweaters. Island Prac­tice is about a doc­tor utter­ly essen­tial to a com­mu­ni­ty at a time when med­i­cine is increas­ing­ly mon­ey-dri­ven and imper­son­al. Can he remain a mav­er­ick even as a health­care chain sub­sumes his hos­pi­tal? Every com­mu­ni­ty has — or, some would say, needs — a Doc­tor Lep­ore, and his island’s dri­ve to retain indi­vid­u­al­i­ty in a cook­ie-cut­ter world is echoed across the country. 

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