From RxISK: Leemon B. McHenry, co-author of The Illusion of Evidence-Based Medicine: Exposing the Crisis of Credibility in Clinical Research (Wakefield Press, 2020), reviews the first novel published by David Healy’s international writers’ co-operative, Samizdat Health.
“Malcharist, by Paul John Scott, is a fictional account of one of psychiatry’s most influential key opinion leaders (KOLs), his ghostwriter, and a journalist on the trail of a big scandal in the world of Big Pharma. The story didn’t happen in reality, but Scott has done his homework in such a way that one of medicine’s darkest secrets is exposed in all of its sordid detail.
. . . The narrative begins with a terrifying description of a patient suffering drug-induced akathisia, a side-effect of antidepressants that often ends in suicide. Chapter by chapter, Scott then introduces the central characters, journalist Griffin Wagner, ghostwriter Shivani Patel, and key opinion leader Dr. Jeremy Elton, and then weaves together the plot, in which the drug maker manipulates clinical trial data to hide the dead bodies in the statistics.
. . . Scott’s book, published in this co-operative venture [Samizdat Health], is the first fiction title. It is a well-written, well-researched, cleverly-crafted novel―a must-read for medical professionals, and especially aspiring key opinion leaders.”