Thursday, October 11, 2012
Wool - Omnibus Edition by Hugh Howey
A self-published book which mainly marketed as an e-book and which has risen to extremely high place on Amazon’s selling charts. The book consists of five separate short stories/novellas, which happen in the same setting and partly with the same characters. The setting is an underground silo where people have lived as long as anyone can remember. The outside world is barren, grey and extremely poisonous and can only be seen from monitors from the top floor of the silo. The worst punishment is a “cleaning” – you are sent to clean the cameras which are sending the real-time feed to the monitors. The worst crime is even hinting that you would like to go outside of the silo. That will always be punished by a cleaning. And no matter how strongly those who are banished swear that they won’t clean the cameras, for some reason they always end up doing it. The stories slowly reveal more and more of the background and give hints what has happened and what the silo really is. The first short story was excellent; the latter longer ones were very good, but felt slightly too prolonged at places. The characters were interesting and had a refreshing degree of shades of black and white. Writing was also very good – something which made me pleasantly surprised. (One always approaches self-published works with some trepidation). The plot was also good and creative, but somewhat depressing at times. An extremely good book, one of the best self-published books I have ever read and something which apparently has made the author at least moderately wealthy.