Sunday, July 28, 2019

Favorite Book Recommendations

I wanted to mix in a fun blog post :)

In alphabetical order by title:

  • "Every Patient Tells a Story" by Lisa Sanders
    • A technical adviser for House describes the creative process of discovering causes and solutions to patients' ailments.
    • Another option is "Complications" by Atul Gawande, which is a set of experiences from a surgeon (some of which are about general medical practice / training)
    • Yet another option is "How Doctors Think" by Jerome Groopman.  All 3 books describe case studies, but I believe there is more of an emphasis on type of "cognitive mistakes" in this book (which I think is useful, even if you are not very familiar with medical terminology).
  • "Jurassic Park" by Michael Crichton
    • What can I say? I loved dinosaurs as a kid, and I still enjoy reading this book.
  • "Reason for Hope" by Jane Goodall
    • A very interesting novel where moral (and spiritual / religious) perspectives are given in the context of chimpanzee behavior (and human treatment of animals) as well as some biographical information about Jane Goodall's early life and family
  • "Siddhartha" by Hermann Hesse
    • A good, short book about the need for life experiences to provide understanding for moral leadership
  • "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People" by Stephen R. Covey
    • Recommended to me by my aunt, I liked this book in terms of emphasizing a need to be motivated by something other than money (such as a "mission statement"), often specifically in the context of running a business
    • I like the concept of developmental stages from "Dependence" to "Independence" to "Interdependence"
    • Relationships in personal life are also described
    • I also think the use of the word "Habit" is important, because it is frequently emphasized that there are no quick fixes for long-term interpersonal problems
    • I also like "Crucial Conversations" by Grenny et al. and "Set Boundaries, Find Peace" by Nedra Glover Tawwab
    • If you are looking for something shorter, then I would recommend "How to Reduce Workplace Conflict and Stress" by Anna Maravelas
  • "The Language of Life" by Francis Collins
    • I believe this provides a very well written overview of genomics research (with fair representation of what can and cannot be achieved, which I think is still mostly true)
    • I also consider "The Genome Odyssey" by Euan Angus Ashley to be a good option.
    • If you are looking for something newer (and longer), I also recommend "She Has Her Mother's Laugh" by Carl Zimmer.
    • "The Gene" by Siddhartha Mukherjee is another alternative option
      • This book also has a PBS special
      • I purchased the large-print edition (by accident, but I think that made it a little easier to read), so my page numbers are probably off compared to others.  However, the relevant content from this Twitter discussion is in the chapter "The Future of the Future".
    • As yet another option, I found "Resurrection Lily" by Amy Myer Shainman to be an excellent collection per personal stories for herself as well as at least one friend and family member (and the book is named after her grandmother).
      • While it doesn't include anywhere near the detail for those case studies, I also have some notes about the related population-level statistics here.
  • "Zoobiquity" by Barbara Natterson-Horowitz and Kathryn Bowers
    • Co-written by two authors, primarily described from the perspective of an MD (a cardiologist / astrophysicist at UCLA who sometimes assists with veterinary work at the LA Zoo).  I think this provides a writing style that is a little different than some other books about wildlife.
    • Provides a number of interesting examples, including insights into disease / behavior through comparative medicine as well as pathogens that can infect both people and other animals.  For example, I learned that it was a pathologist at the Bronx Zoo that corrected an initial misdiagnosis for St. Louis Encephalitis for the West Nile outbreak in 1999 .  This is also described in a summary from the One Health Commission (which is something else that I learned about).  Creation of the National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases was also described.

Change Log:

7/28/2019 - creation and public post
10/20/2019 - add 7 Habits
12/6/2019 - add link to Carl Zimmer book
12/25/2019 - add link to another communication book
3/29/2020 - add Zoobiquity to the list
7/5/2020 - add link to "The Gene"
10/25/2020 - add link to "Resurrection Lily"
12/26/2020 - add link to "How Doctors Think"
3/26/2022 - add link to "Crucial Conversations" and "Set Boundaries, Find Peace"
3/5/2024 - add link to "Crucial Conversations" and "Set Boundaries, Find Peace"

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