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The Reward for Work Done is More Work

I hated that statement when my mentor Dr Conrad R. Cole said it to me while I was Publicity Editor for our medical student journal, DOKITA – he was editor-in-chief. You too have probably heard other versions of the same work done = more work quote. I have given up trying to disprove this concept, particularly when it comes to reading and reviewing new books.  When the Family Medicine Book & Media Review Editor sends me book titles for potential reviews I’m rewarded with opportunities to grow and learn.

In January 2020, I chose the book Fallible: A Memoir of a Young Physician’s Struggle with Mental Illness to review. Based on information available online, I expected to discover how trainees and young clinicians can be helped to establish stellar careers despite mental illness. I was not disappointed and learned about an area of critical importance to medicine and medical education.

The title Fallible provides a first person account of a family medicine physician with mental illness who navigated mental illness from childhood through residency and academic practice.  Perseverance - or to use the author’s word, hope - is how the author wrestled the anxiety that had dogged him from grade school to his present role as a practicing clinician. I believe its message to current and future primary care physicians and to young people (and their parents) is that they can achieve real success despite pervasive anxiety. The book, written by Dr. Kyle Bradford Jones, Associate Professor, Dept of Family and Preventive Medicine at the University of Utah, uses everyday language and is a smooth read (1).

How did this book differ from the previous book I reviewed (2)? It contained the author’s faculty card and contact information making it easy for me to thank Dr. Jones for his work and to see if he deemed my review accurate. His response? “I’m trying to get more uptake in various medical professional schools and residencies, so every little bit helps.”

Why is this book relevant to our audience? Dr. Jones discusses real but familiar struggles with anxiety in medical school and depression in residency, offering hope to trainees and their mentors. For me the opportunity to learn, share this story, and meet Dr. Jones were my rewards for not too much work!


Kolade VO. Fallible: A Memoir of a Young Physician’s Struggle with Mental Illness.

Family Medicine 2020; 52(10):761-2.


2.     Kolade VO. Enticing You to Write a Book Review. AIAMC Blog, December 16, 2021.


Dr. Kolade is Interim Co-Chief for Quality, Wellness & Research, Sayre Internal Medicine, The Guthrie Clinic, and Clinical Professor of Medicine & Regional Clerkship Director for Internal Medicine, Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine.

Ready to do a book review of your own? If you recently read/reviewed a book, please contact us so that we can consider including your narrative on our blog!!

AIAMC Book Review Editor: Deborah Simpson, PhD