Mark's Reviews > Wool Omnibus

Wool Omnibus by Hugh Howey
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Oct 20, 12

Read on September 01, 2012

Wow. Simple name. Great concept. Great execution.

The premise here is that there are these great, cylindrical, underground silos in which humanity huddles against the poisonous external atmosphere. Is it Earth? How did this come to happen? What are the rules? What does "wool" mean?

The best part of this book is how the story unfolds or, rather, how it is unfolded by Hugh Howey.

The first "chapter" is essentially a short novella, in which a respected member of the community (that you don't know anything about) walks up a flight of stairs and utters five simple words which effectively end his life. What? But the book has you from the first page. The deeper you read, the more you learn about this world that Howey has built and the deeper the story pulls you in. Each chapter reveals some new, critical secret about the world of Wool that makes you rethink what you just read. Really well done.

The second best part of this book is the overall .... I don't know .... "darkness" is the word I want to use. There's this sense of despair that pervades all five stories. Humans are trapped in this underground prison and seem to have been there for centuries with no end in sight. And the culture has twisted so that violent revolutions and death sentences are routine. And yet, there is still hope that one day things will get better.

The third best part of this book is that things *do* get better, through an unexpected series of events. I left this story really hungry for the next set of submissions from Mr. Howey.
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