Book review: A brief guide to the end of oil

, by Paul Middleton, is pretty much what it says on the cover. I found it in a bookshop on monday on my way out of the office, and I’d finished by the time I got home. Brief it certainly is. I’ve read a lot about oil in the last couple of months, and for busy people, this may be the book to go for if you just want a quick round up of the issues around peak oil – how much more have we got? Who’s got it? What might happen as oil begins to run out?

The book deals with those questions well enough. It doesn’t deal with a whole load of others, most notably the issue of what we do about it. Having painted a fairly bleak picture in the closing chapter, Middleton leaves any possible solutions to someone else.

It’s not a great book – it’s from a small publishing house and the proof-reading is a little shoddy. The editor could have reined in some of the authors more throwaway comments too. They’re a little grating, like a science teacher trying to be funny. But I don’t want to be uncharitable. This is a neat, concise, and useful book, and there’s nothing else quite like it on the market.

If you’ve got more time, read Paul Robert’s , but to get the low-down in a couple of hours, pick up the brief guide.

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