The Price of Everything
By David Henderson
My review of Russ Roberts’ excellent economics novel, The Price of Everything is in the latest issue of Regulation. Roberts is definitely growing as a novelist. I like it better than The Invisible Heart, which I liked better than his first novel, The Choice.
The following paragraph tells about one of my favorite parts of the book:
There are other nice touches. One of my favorites is Lieber’s story of a family friend who put 20 years of his life into producing a medical device that made him rich. Lieber makes clear that the way you get rich in a free market is by producing something people really want. Why did they want this medical device? Because it blasted the plaque from people’s arteries, making open-heart surgery unnecessary. In the previous year, the device had helped about 4,000 people. But then the man found out that he had liver cancer and a life expectancy of only a few months. He was distraught. His children were grown and he had hardly ever been around; his wife had left him. I don’t want to give away the story — it surprised me and I want you to have the same surprise. But what happened next was a wonderful, loving, and totally believable way of helping the man see just how important his life had been.