Book of the Day 1/11/23

Burned Out by Dean Mafako, M.D.

(Fiction / Medical)

Burned Out is a captivating, thought-provoking, and page-turning novel that will resonate with readers who work in the medical field. You can tell that author Dean Mafako writes from the heart – as personal narrative is the driving force behind his triumphant book. Even if you are not a part of the medical community (like me), you’ll love this story about a man who faces insurmountable odds, but does not give up on his mission to build something that will make a difference.

The book tells the story of Eric Philson. He comes to the Children’s Hospital of Biloxi with one goal – to build the cardiac intensive care unit from the ground up. Like all things in life, he must overcome intense adversity to achieve his goals. He faces devastation from a hurricane, deprivation of staff and resources, and a cardiac surgeon who resists change.

Dr. Philson has the spirit and tenacity to do whatever it takes to improve the system to care for children. But it comes at a cost. Committing everything to build the cardiac intensive care unit begins to take a toll on his personal life, marriage, and health. As the novel progresses, he must consider how much he is willing to sacrifice – especially as he faces hundred-hour work weeks and emotional exhaustion. Author Dean Mafako poses the question, does one man have the determination to do the right thing, even if it costs him everything?

The book is so much more than a medical saga. It’s a powerful story about facing trauma and struggle head-on – and using those experience to achieve growth and drive change. Burned Out is about confronting your demons and fighting for what’s right, no matter the cost. The novel is rich with insightful themes that will stick with readers – and possibly even uplift them as they face their own challenges.

Everyone, in their own way, is trying to build something. This book allows us to think about our own lives in the context of the story – and truly reflect on how far we are willing to go to achieve our goals. Suffering is an inevitability. In suffering, we have the opportunity to express grit and toughness to come out the other side – full and healed.

If you’re a medical professional who has worked long, difficult hours, you’ll love this book. But regardless of your career, there’s so much you can learn about life and yourself by reading Burned Out. It’s a wonderful new novel by a skilled author. I highly recommend you read it this year.

One thought on “Book of the Day 1/11/23

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  1. Joel, thank you so much for this incredible review. It seems odd to hear you refer to me as an “author”, because I certainly don’t feel like one. Writing this book was therapeutic for me and I wanted to share the story with others in hopes that they too may find it therapeutic and perhaps help them confront whatever challenges they were dealing with in their life. Your interpretation of my book made me extremely happy and emotional when I read it because I can tell you that this book was written straight from my heart. My biggest concern in writing this book was that my emotions would be distracting from the main point of the story. Not only am I flattered by your kind words, you truly brought a smile to my face when I read your accurate depiction of the message that I was intending to deliver to readers. My worry as a first time author was that I would confuse those who were not in the medical field or that the message would be less meaningful. Reading your review helped relieve these fears and you have indeed made my year with your kind words!! Thank you so much for your thoughtful and accurate review.
    Dean Mafako, MD

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