I’ve been trying to catch up on reading for social policy, and it’s not been a rewarding experience. I’ve just read two books on inequality that couldn’t tell me was inequality was; three books on austerity, two of which could have been written at any time since 1980; several papers that have gratuitous numbers and more references than text; and two and a half books on social work which have told me useless things like saying that capitalism is bad or that people have problems, without giving any hint or clue about what social workers might actually do about it. I’m not going to name those books, because throwing around insults isn’t going to win any friends, but I will mention the one glimmer of light, which was Frances Ryan’s book Crippled: austerity and the demonisation of disabled people. It’s about people’s lives, and everything rings true. If only there were more like it.