Top positive review
One person found this helpful
Usually off-topic, but very interesting
on April 10, 2010
First, the bad news. Most of this book is off-topic. Only a small fraction of the book deals with peak oil or running out of gas. The remainder deals with topics like physics, energy, history of industrialism, and more--topics which are only tangentially related to peak oil.
With that said, the book contains an excellent non-technical introduction to fundamental concepts of physics and energy. It describes things like entropy, thermodynamics, and so on, in a manner which is lucid, approachable, and highly interesting. This book would make an excellent introduction to energy and thermodynamics for high school students, or for older adults whose scientific education was less than satisfactory.
The book also contains a readable and concise overview of the history of the industrial revolution. It deals with things like the Steam Engine and improvements to it, internal combustion engines, and so on. This book nicely intertwines the development of steam engines with the simultaneous development of theories of energy and physics.
Overall, this book is a good read, even if it's meandering and occasionally off-topic.