Customer Reviews: Wool 5 - The Stranded (Silo series)
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on January 26, 2012
Hugh Howey has done something absolutely remarkable with this series. He's taken the purest of man's most animal emotions, distilled them, and used the ink to to pen an epic that will launch a writing career of limitless possibility. The characters seem to jump off the page and dig into your soul; each confrontation, each new encounter leaving the reader in a sympathetic sheen of perspiration. Your own feet are running down the great stairways, your hands grasping makeshift rifles or flipping through pages of unbelievable history. Your heart races as you realize that, unlike so many false-reality fiction writers of our time, Howey is not afraid to allow you to fall in love with a character and then wrench that person's life away through the freezing waters and purifying fires of reality. To write more would be to give away a story that should require no teasing hints to get you to read it. The first page is enough to cause you to loose a day reading it from start to finish. I know I did.

This is fiction writing as it should be - keep it coming, Hugh!
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on February 23, 2012
I thoroughly enjoyed the entire Wool series--would be interesting to see this converted into a movie or mini-series. The epilogue really helped bring some closure to finish out the story... but left just enough to continue the story if the author decided to. I would be interested in finding out what happens to Silo 17.... do the flooded levels get completely dried out, do the digging machines get discovered and put to use to laterally connect silos? Does the atmosphere ever recover? Would love to discover more about how the silos came to be? Despite these questions, Mr. Howey, this was a story well told and enjoyed. Thanks!
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on April 5, 2012
I devoured Hugh Howey's first four novelettes in the WOOL series in record time. The characters were fascinating, the circumstances intriguing, the action subtle and imaginative; all-in-all, simply wonderful! But WOOL 5 moves from the novelette format, which had demanded a terse writing style that moved events along at a breath-takingly rapid pace, to the more leisurely, time accommodating full blown novel. It seems as though the shift from novelettes to full novel blunted Howey's crisp, concise writing style, slowed the action to a crawl, and resulted in much extraneous filler material that really doesn't need to be there. While reading the novelettes, I couldn't turn the pages fast enough, finding myself amazed at Howey's ability to draw the reader into the emotions of the characters, but now I find myself struggling to stay focused on the slow moving story presented in the novel. The characters are still interesting and the overall concept of the story is still fascinating, but the action simply drags along. I had read all four of the novelettes in a matter of a few hours over a two day period, but now, after a week, I find that I am only half-way through the novel. I will force myself to finish the book because I anticipate that the ending will be awesome (based on the preponderance of Five Star Reviews it has received) and I certainly urge anyone who has not yet read any of the WOOL series to immediately do so, but you should be aware that Howey's handling of the novel length of WOOL 5 makes it a slow slough compared to the blistering pace he set in the WOOL 1 through 4 novelettes.
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on January 27, 2012
Howey just keeps getting better (if that's possible). I loved the Molly Fyde series, but the Wool series caught me at Book ONE...... The writing gets better and the suspense just continues to increase with each Wool Book. This is a series not to miss. I just can't wait to see where he takes us next -- to another silo -- to another land of aliens (Molly Fyde...) or to another planet altogether. Wherever he's headed --- I want to go tooo.
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on January 26, 2012
For the last few days I've been on tenterhooks waiting for this latest installment of WOOL. The first thing I did this morning was check to see if it had been released yet and there it was! Me in my jammies, coffee cup forgotten on the counter, making dead sure that my Kindle copy of WOOL 5 was securely ensconced and ready to read.

And then the day conspired against me. Things to do, places to go, no time to dive in and read. I downed the first chapter standing in line in the bank and that was it. I had to get this read asap! I kinda felt like a junkie with a fix in one pocket and surrounded by cops...

I finally got to read it and here I am 1 hour later. For those of you who have already read any of the WOOL books this one is....gosh, I've got a zillion words running around in my head....indescribably good. And worth a heck of a lot more than it cost. And doesn't disappoint. And so many other things.

The WOOL books are like an undiscovered country and I'm the intrepid explorer, marveling at the sights, gasping at the dangers but most of all, wondering what is over the next hill and eagerly trekking onwards.

Bravo Mr. Howey!
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on January 26, 2012
This series as a whole has been an amazing journey through a not to distant future. I am a 17 year old guy who should be out hanging with friends, but what can I say I love this book series. I totally shut down and read Wool 1-4 within 8 hours of purchasing them. I felt so lost without knowing what happened next, Which is a feeling I don't achieve very often with today's novels being written. I had to check Hugh's website two to three times a day just hoping to get a bit of information on when the next addition would arrive. Imagine my surprise when I woke this morning first thing to Wool 5's release. I love the feeling when a GREAT book can pull you in while keeping the story very straight forward.

Congratulation Hugh on a very great series. (I know you read these, I can't believe we have live so close and I hadn't heard of you till last November) I look forward to devouring future novels and telling everyone I know about them.
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on March 23, 2012
I borrowed the first 4 Wool books, and bought the 5th. I am talking about all 5 books here.
I agree with other posters who find it hard to express their thoughts about this series of books.
I had never read anything like it. The story built slowly through books 1, 2 and 3. After Wool 4, I was so hooked on the story, and sad...I couldn't borrow Wool 5, so I bought it. :)
It was worth 10 times the 99c I paid for it.
It is a story of people whose lives begin and end in a sunken silo. They have no other world. Theirs is quite complete with all they may need, and I thought that very few wondered why they were there, or what might be outside; they had no frame of reference for any other life.
As the story continues and builds; as you learn why they are there, and how they continue their lives there........I am going to stop right there. Wool, the series of 5 that I read are absolutely the best new books I have read in the past few years.
I felt the author never faltered in his telling of the story. His sentences are perfectly shaped to carry the story forward. You are not side-tracked from the real story by anything that doesn't move it forward.
I am going to buy the collection of 1-5 so I can read them again, and probably again. At the end, DO NOT put the book away till you read everything that follows. The epilogue was great.

I am impressed, Hugh Howey! You are now my new favorite author and I will read anything you ever write.

**Update 6/5/14 I have bought the omnibus and it is in my Keep & Read again collection. I still believe that Hugh Howey is my favorite author, and I am and have been reading everything he writes. And no, I do not know him, nor have I ever gotten a book free from him for a review.
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on July 4, 2012
Now I get to my full review, after 5 installments.

Very rarely does one find a book -let alone 5- for 99 cents on kindle, that you simply refuse to put down. I read the first book, and immediately downloaded the other 4. I read every single one almost non-stop. They are simply that good. Hugh Howey is a master at crafting a page turner....the suspense encountered at every corner sucks you in so deep you're oblivious as to how much time has passed since you started reading.

The character development is key in his writing. Each book centers around a different protagonist, with secondary yet vital characters mixed in. The books are all very short, the first being 100 kindle pages...yet in such a short time, Hugh manages to describe everyone in such detail and depth you feel you know them in real life. Furthermore, you really feel for the feel their pain, their anguish, frustrations, fear, triumph and tribulations. Even the 'bad guys' are wrung out in such a way, you actually understand why they did what they did, and can almost empathize with them.

I'm not going to give any spoilers. I'll only say it's about a silo underground (bunker), with Hugh's magnifying glass hovering over it. Fans of Fallout will definitely relate to the vault-like atmosphere, a point which I found heartening.

Quite simply put, BUY ALL 6 EDITIONS OF WOOL AND YOU WON'T REGRET IT!!!! Movie rights were mentioned, and I can't wait if/when one will be made. This is a book that NEEDS a movie made so the world can learn of it.
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on May 8, 2012
Simply Awesome...

As a voracious reader, and acknowledged 0.99 cent trawler, I muddle through dozens of viewings from the Cheap Seat... Hoping, scratching, wishing for wheat amongst the chaff, the diamond in the rough.

While I admit to struggling, just a bit, with the first story as I searched for where it fit, by the end of that one and then ALL the way through Wool 5 (which I finished all of 12 minutes ago), I have sat as if in a daze as the story played out before my eyes!

An incredible story of an all-too-believable world... Depth and dimensions to the characters...

My greatest disappointment with any book, or movie for that matter, is when suspension of disbelief fails... When I find myself almost physically ejected from the story by an author taking liberties or stretching just one iota too far.

Hugh has managed to build this story and create this world through 5 episodes so far, and not ONCE did this occur.

Kudos to you, Hugh... and my heartfelt thanks as well!
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This was a very nice continuation of the series, and I was glad this was more book length vs. the shorter versions of installments 1-4! Speaking of installments 1-4, I highly recommend you start with Wool 1 and read the series in order as, otherwise, you will be scratching your head wondering what is going on in some situations!

Hugh Howey does a great job with the personal interactions and somehow putting you in the heads of the characters: when they are cold, you're cold, when they are running out of air you start breathing a little faster. I found myself thinking about this book and the situations long after I put this one down, which is impressive (to me) due to the volume of books and short stories I read each week. If you enjoy a futuristic tale that doesn't have a lot of science fiction - but has some good action and dialogue, and a potential scene of the future of mankind that is believable, I would suggest you get this series right now.

One question for Mr. Howey: how long is the wait for book 6? I'm ready!
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