After an unspecified disaster that has rendered the outside world moot to live upon, humanity is forced to live underground in silos to go about their daily existence. People are not allowed to talk of the outside world or question their existence within the silo. If they do it is punishable by being forced to go outside where they meet their inevitable end. This is the story of humanities constant struggle to be free and to explore. Humanities natural inclination to question things around them and what happens when they are forced to squelch these tendencies. It’s about the repetitive cycle of violence and betrayal and of the demise of “civilization.”
I struggled with liking this book the entire time I was trying to read it, which unfortunately, made the process entirely stressful as I just wanted it to end. I read this series of books after hearing so much about them from various groups on the internet. People were raving about them and saying how awesome and mind-blowing this series was to them. I honestly think the reviews are overrated.
The main characters, which there are many, aren’t very memorable and I didn’t care about them one way or another. Maybe it was just tiresome to me to read the book from one characters viewpoint and then have to switch abruptly to another one after the writer decided it was time to shift to a new one. Maybe it was because all the characters were similar and obvious and rather boring. I’m leaning towards the “boring and obvious” aspect. The only character that was remotely interesting was Juliette.
The premise behind the book is interesting and it reminds me a little of the After/Life book I read awhile back, but a lot more flushed out. What would happen if generations were forced to live underground and prior histories were erased from the publics memory until the old reality is completely forgotten and turned into myth or just “stories?” Could this really happen? Is the cycle of violence able to be avoided? Is the violence caused by natural tendencies or is it forced upon a society by the actions of their leaders or social mores?
My final thoughts on this series is that they are worth checking out, but go into it knowing that it is a bit drab and boring to read. If you go into it knowing this to be the case, it might help you get through the books faster. There are books out there that become an essential part of a genre’s list of books that become “must-reads” and this is one of those books that ends up into this category. It’s the premise of it and the thought out world that these books bring that makes them essential reads. Wool meets this criteria.
I give this book 3 out of 5 stars or a B-.
Pros: Interesting Premise, thought-provoking, well written layout of the silos, seemingly researched, edited for grammar/spelling
Cons: Boring, all characters are similar, shifting viewpoints, you won’t give two hoots about the majority of the characters, badly written love stories