The 39 best health and science books to read this summer

Need a new book to dive into? Check out the great health, medicine, and science reads on STAT's annual summer book list.

Summer is officially here, and so is STAT’s annual book list, chock full of great health, medicine, and science reads to dive into on vacation or during a relaxing time at home.

From the downfall of a buzzy biotech startup to the quest to revive the extinct woolly mammoth to explorations of the historic 1918 flu pandemic, there’s sure to be a page-turner below to capture your attention. Enjoy!



“Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup”
By John Carreyrou
In an era of hope and hype for disruption in health care, this forensic and compelling inside story of the rise and fall of biotech startup Theranos documents a stunning lack of integrity and ethical oversight by the organization’s senior leadership. Its employees and especially the patients who counted on them deserved better.
— Dr. Sue Desmond-Hellmann, chief executive officer of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation 

“The Great Influenza: The Story of the Deadliest Pandemic in History”
By John M. Barry
This fascinating book explores the impact of the historic flu pandemic of 1918, which killed at least 50 million people worldwide. It should be required reading for all people in the medical and public health fields. Really, everyone in public service should read it! We have come a long way since the great flu pandemic of 1918, but we must always stay vigilant and continue to improve pandemic flu preparedness.
— Dr. Robert R. Redfield, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention director

 “The Servant: A Simple Story About the True Essence of Leadership”
By James This is the story of an outwardly successful businessman whose personal and professional lives are spiraling out of control. He finds his way back to what’s really important in life after reluctantly spending a week at a Benedictine monastery. He learns that loyal followers committed to a goal aren’t gained through fear and intimidation, but through relationships built on mutual respect and service, and leaders who prioritize the real needs of those who they wish to lead. I love this book because it helped me wrap my head around something I’ve always noticed, but couldn’t put into words — my success as a leader has always been directly tied to my commitment to helping others, versus demanding that they help me.

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