“Economics: A User’s Guide” by Ha-Joon Chang

Welcome to Very Concise Book Reviews! I’m planning on reviewing here the books I read from now on, in… a very concise way. No bells or whistles, just the pure, meaty review.

In a Nutshell

This book wants to be a primer on all things economics. I picked it up out of curiosity towards the subject, and found it satisfying my needs. By the end, I felt like I had a firmer grasp on the topics and ready to move on to other, more in-depth readings, so I’d definitely say it hit the mark. Since it’s an introductory book, you really do not need to know anything about economics in order to enjoy it.

The Good

  1. The book is written in a clear and easy to understand language. Only one or two times the author used jargon which I’ve had to look up.
  2. The clear division 1 chapter = 1 topic makes it a great reference book to keep on your shelf for later use.
  3. It does what it says on the cover. It’s a neat introduction with a bit of everything, giving you a taste for the topic as a whole, in all of its main ramifications. It gives you the freedom to delve into more detail later at your own discretion.
  4. It has some very neat tables inside which I will definitely reference to later on.

The Neutral

  1. You need to be willing to learn something new about economics. Many mass-market non-fiction books try to keep you hooked with many bells and whistles. This book, pretty much, does not, so you’ll have to mostly rely on your information crave to go on. I personally don’t mind this, but I can understand if you do.

The Bad

  1. The author is biased towards certain economical ideas and concepts. While I understand his position and respect it, I don’t believe it appropriate to include personal opinions in a book which is supposed to be a primer to the subject.
  2. The book definitely hits the ground running. It does not spend much time glossing over the broader definitions and concepts of economics and gets to the meat very quickly.

Recommended To:

Those who are interested in knowing the inner workings of the economy, whether it’s companies, individuals, finance, national or international economics. It’s a relatively short book so it’s not a huge time investment, and in my opinion, it’s well worth the time.

You can get this book on Amazon here.

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