Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Wool (two reviews)

by Hugh Howey

Wool by Hugh Howey is a dystopian novel set in the cramped confines of the Silo. Originally self-published as five novellas, the omnibus edition collects the original stories in one printed volume. The Silo is an underground bunker over a hundred stories deep and housing thousands of people who are stratified into a rigid society. The level you live on determines your social status, culture, job, and values. But all residents of the Silo share the ultimate taboo...don't talk about the outside. The outside world is toxic, the only view of their surroundings visible through camera lens that are constantly being degraded by dust storms, acid rain, and caustic air. Those who wonder out loud about the world beyond the constantly degrading view will be sent to clean, and the Cleaners don't come back. In a society this cloistered, control must be absolute. When the people in power begin to question the absolutes they have always taken for granted, the fate of the Silo is called into question. Wool is many things. A dystopian examination of a society pushed to the breaking point, a tragic love story, and a claustrophobic thrill ride. This novel will appeal to fans of post-apocalyptic stories like Fallout 3, Bioshock, and Justin Cronin's Passage trilogy. Also recommended for older YA readers looking for more dystopian thrillers after they finish the Hunger Games. [If you enjoy this, you may also wish to try The Passage Trilogy by Justin Cronin, The Road by Cormac McCarthy, Pure by Julianna Baggott, The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins.] -- recommended by Cally O. - Gere Branch Library

This was ranked supremely high on, so I figured I would give it a shot. Wool is a collection of stories that were first released exclusively for the Kindle. After they went viral, they published the books in an Omnibus collection. There is a Prequel omnibus as well "Shift," and a sequel omnibus "Dust." This wasn't a fast read, I found myself re-reading passages, and some of the detail bogs down the plot. But over all I would highly recommend it to post-apocalyptic science-fiction fans. Imagine planet earth in the future, where people can't go outside but must live in underground silos, shut off from the outside world. There is a mayor, a sheriff, different levels to live on: one for Information Technology, Mechanical, Supply; people work; children play and go about their business as normal. But as punishment for a crime, people are sent outside the silo to "clean" it with steel wool, hence the title-- ultimately a death sentence because after leaving, no one is allowed back in; bodies speckle the horizon. But there is another meaning to wool, for the main character Juliette, someone has tried to pull the "wool" over her eyes, and she sees right through it. [If you enjoy this, you may also wish to try Dune by Frank Herbert.] -- recommended by Jeremiah J. - Bennett Martin Public Library

 [ official Hugh Howey web site ]

 Have you read this one? What did you think? Did you find this review helpful?

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