Thursday, 14 November 2013

Book Review: Wool

Wool Omnibus (Silo, #1; Wool, #1-5)Wool Omnibus by Hugh Howey
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is, quite simply, the best science fiction book I've read in years. A post-apocalyptic tale of survivors living in a silo with no idea of the world outside, Howey manages to keep this grim, cramped setting from being dull. Howey creates a whole culture, a whole world inside the silo, showing an amazing talent for making the unreal seem real.
Of course it's the characters that make the story, and Howey's characters are believable, flawed, and sympathetic. There are also scenes of genuine tension and suspense.

I did have a few nitpicks. I felt a bit of disappointment when it's revealed where they are. I preferred it when it was vague, because then my imagination could put the silo anywhere like in that classic of the genre, Level 7. Also, the main character's troubles with her father are never fully explained and her reunion with him seemed rushed. In addition, the villain makes a key blunder late in the book that I have trouble believing this normal careful character would make.
These minor quibbles are nothing compared to the fine writing, great characterization, and compelling setting of this landmark novel, so I'm still giving it five stars.

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