Saturday, August 31, 2013
Sci-Fi: Wool by Hugh Howey
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Date: January 2012
Source: GoodReads First Look
Read: for review (disclaimer: I received my copy of this book for free in exchange for an honest review.)
Reading time: about a month
From GoodReads: In a ruined and toxic landscape, a community exists in a giant silo underground, hundreds of stories deep. There, men and women live in a society full of regulations they believe are meant to protect them. Sheriff Holston, who has unwaveringly upheld the silo's rules for years, unexpectedly breaks the greatest taboo of all: he asks to go outside. His fateful decision unleashes a drastic series of events. An unlikely candidate is appointed to replace him: Juliette, a mechanic with no training in law, whose special knack is fixing machines. Now Juliette is about to be entrusted with fixing her silo, and she will soon learn just how badly her world is broken. The silo is about to confront what its history has only hinted about and its inhabitants have never dared to whisper. Uprising.
My review: Despite the intimidating page count and the insanely long amount of time I took to finish this book, Wool is a read I found highly worthwhile (otherwise, I wouldn't have stuck with it for a month). Aiding in this is that if you get stuck in the depths of the pages without enough time to read for a while, it's quite easy to pick up the storyline and characters right where you left them. The plot is complex enough to be interesting but not so convoluted as to inhibit a very leisurely read. (In my case, by leisurely I mean depressingly slow - my fault, not the book's.)
As to the actual content of the novel, it's pretty great. It's well-written, the pacing is consistent, and everything just melds together really well. I was hooked by the first section, though a bit befuddled by the changes in subsequent parts as to who seemed to be the main character, and enjoyed every bit of the 500 pages. The worldbuilding is awesome and could support another epic-length book or two, it's so well-done by always providing readers with just the right amount of information. The characters are equally well-written, with a good balance of psychological insight and actual actions. This definitely makes my list of sci-fi books to recommend to fans of the genre.