It's funny (especially if you like Douglas Adams of "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" fame) and relatively well-written for a début, but that's not the point (I mean if you expect a Nobel prize for literature contender or a gripping global story like Stepehen Baxter's Flood then better not even start reading it!).
The point is that academia is in crisis and (contra James Jenkins' review) this is *real* (I'm a practising scientist myself) and it does *matter* for society (at least I hope so, otherwise why would we spend so much effort?) and this book builds upon this real crisis to produce a deeply disturbing future scenario: maybe this is the right way to make people aware of what's going on?
But not even that is the point! I think the deep message (which Casey explicitly makes towards the end) is that academia's issues (of which funding is but one) are simply a reflection of our society’s wider issues. In the end, we academics are not isolated in an ivory tower (despite what many believe) but part of society, and we respond to its needs and ideals (because we want or because we have to) science being, in the end, just a mirror of society's own image.
So if you don't like how science looks, what it seems to be doing and what is produces (well, we don't either in many instances), before blaming us (we're just humans in the end) ask yourself what are the root causes: maybe it's because we are forced to provide sexy (sometimes literally), revolutionary, amazing new discoveries that will change the face of the Earth (and beyond) every day, so that we can have the (meagre) funding to actually do the work that might -- just might -- make people's lives better, more fulfilling, worth living?
Science is in crisis but then what's not?
(review of free book)