Richard horton

Coming soon: Devi Sridhar’s spring best-seller

It’s been a tough pandemic for all of us here in Britain. Lockdowns, supply shortages, over-zealous policemen and Matt Hancock’s gurning face – there’s been a shortage of joy these past 18 months. But now Mr S is delighted to discover there is light at the end of the tunnel: a forthcoming book bonanza by Covid experts – and Devi Sridhar – who have all somehow found time to pen books on the global crisis despite being proven wrong again and again. Below is Steerpike’s guide to all the titles which won’t be flying off the bookshelves in the forthcoming months…. First, we have the aforementioned Sridhar, who finally has a release

The Lancet, China and the origins of coronavirus

Right from its first issue in 1823, the Lancet was more than just an ordinary medical journal. Its founding editor, the dyspeptic surgeon and coroner Thomas Wakley, purposefully gave the journal the name of a sharp scalpel that could cut away useless, diseased tissue: he used it as a campaigning organ, to push back against injustice, bad ideas and bad practice. What bothered Wakley most was the establishment. Not only did the Royal College of Surgeons care little about quacks and snake-oil salesmen, but its members were also engaged in corruption and nepotism, ensuring that their cronies got the best positions and filling their pockets with lecture fees. Wakley wrote