I wasn’t over-the-moon about this final chapter of Hugh Howey’s speculative fiction series, beginning with Wool and ending with Dust – but mainly I think its because I read them on audio. These are quite detailed, and I didn’t really feel I was doing them justice. But I began listening anyway and soon became enthralled when I realised that the narratives from the two previous novels were about the become entwined. In the first novel, we were introduced to Juliet, who discovered that the Silo she lived in was not the only one in the world, and that humanity was much greater in number than she thought. In this third book we find her using diggers beneath the surface to return to Silo 18 to claim Solo and the other survivors she met there.
Meanwhile in Silo 1, the master silo with all the answers, Donald (masquerading as Thurman, the leader of the Silo) has been discovered, and is trying to find a way to save himself and his sister Charlotte who he awoke at the end of Shift from cryogenic stasis. The use of this stasis has allowed Donald – who was present for the beginning of the silos, and filled in much of the backstory in Book 2 – to be alive during Juliet’s time. They finally make contact in this final novel.
However, like in most science fiction novels, questioning an authoritarian system has a price, and both Juliet and Donald pay it in this novel. But a glimmer of hope makes the ending one worth waiting for.
I think there is a lot to like in this series, even if I am still not sure of aspects of the premise of it.