Last Light has to one of the more recent books I’ve read to make it to my mental list of must reads. The reason I would include this has more to do with setting of this novel then anything else, the plot wasn’t that good.
The story opens up with the main character being a civilian engineer working in Iraq when all hell breaks loose, the end result is the end of oil. This story is really about Peak Oil, and the only fiction in this book is the trigger, at least we the readers, and the author hopes that the trigger is fiction, giving us a little more time.
The story is only a medium to the real story going on in the background, survivalists will love this story. The characters are just there to entertain, well we are told what would happen if the world oil tap was suddenly shut off without warning.
The author I think is not making an extraordinary claim as to the consequences of a sudden oil cut off towards food riots, lack of drinking water, and the other end results. In fact he makes an important note, that oil equals the same as each of us, even the poor, as having 96 slaves each:
“Well, say you’ve come home from work and you want to wash your office shirt for tomorrow. You’d shove it in your washing machine, and then put it on the fast spin-dry afterwards, wouldn’t you? And maybe you want a cup of tea whilst you’re waiting, maybe put on the TV, and throw a frozen dinner in the microwave. Well in slave terms, that would have required a slave to take your shirt, chop wood to make a fire, to heat the water, to wash it. You’d probably need another slave to go hunt or gather the food for your dinner, another slave to chop wood and build a cooking fire, to boil the water for your tea, and cook the food that the hunter-slave brought in. Still more slaves to entertain you in place of a TV set. And let’s not forget the four or five slaves that carried you home from work on their backs, instead of the car you drive home in. Anyway, you get the point right?”
Imagine us without the slave of oil, that’s the premise for this book. And IMHO t’s not so much a work of fiction, but a warning of the future.