Books that Don't Suck: Wool

I recently discussed a book that sucks, so here is one that does not suck: Wool.  I am not sure what makes it so compelling, but I had a lost couple of days when I blew off what I was supposed to be doing and read all of the first five books (the first few are short so that all five are only about 500 pages altogether).

Save time and buy the anthology.


I don't know how many of you read it, but for me Wool seems to echo many themes from A Canticle for Leibowitz.  The series are totally different in style and content and story-telling and characters, but none-the-less they both address themes like the recurrence, almost cyclicality, of man's failings and the role of rules (even arbitrary rules) and authority in breaking or reinforcing these cycles.

And speaking of things this novel reminded me of, in the latter parts of the anthology we are introduced in Wool to a sort of instruction manual for the state that is a kind of dark version of Seldon's psycho-history in the Foundation novels.

The whole novel is familiar and highly creative at the same time.  Go buy it.


  1. Morlock Publishing:

    Agreed. Wool is decent.

  2. Scott S:

    I enjoyed the series too (currently reading his latest, Dust). Another nice thing about it is that the author has apparently 'open sourced' his world; a check of Amazon shows many other authors writing Silo stories. Yes, Sturgeon's law and all that, but still nice to see.

  3. marque2:

    A canticle for Leibowitz brings back memories. Before books on tape Public radio stations used to do dramatic radio shows based on books. A scarlet Letter - Towers of Inverness and of course The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy. One of the dramatic reenactments was CFL - I liked the story so much I read the book. It seemed kinda bleak though - ended kinda the same way it started.

    Another good book is Watership Down which presents human forms of society as defined by rabbits. I should read that one again.

  4. Matthew Slyfield:

    Is it an anthology or a novel? It can't be both. A novel is a single book length story where an anthology is a collection of short stories which may or may not be related, but each stands on it's own.

  5. Solomon Foster:

    For what it's worth, Hitchhiker's Guide was originally a radio show. The book is an adaptation of the radio show, rather than the other way around. (Though the books went further than the original radio show did, and after Adams' death these later books were adopted into radio shows.)

  6. marque2:

    Yes - I was just pointing out they did radio dramas. I nearly mentioned Star Wars radio show - which is really based on a movie. They turned a 2 hour movie into six hours of radio.

    The Star Wars show was forgotten - but is important for this - when it was sold to local radio stations the stations were forced to buy a bundle Star wars with this quirky British sci fi comedy.

    Then rest is history. The first 12 episodes were actually two separate series that were bundled together for the US.

  7. Scott Miller:

    Read all the way through the Shift and Dust series to get the entire Wool story. Very deep, twisted, and has elements of Lost.

  8. herdgadfly:

    A distinction without a difference . . . radio scripts have to be written and the author for these scripts was Douglas Adams. There are five books in the "Hitchhiker's Trilogy" (Adams humor) and in some varying orders, all five were done into radio and television series.

  9. davesmith001:

    I have not yet read Dust, but the rest of the series has been magnificent. Interestingly, the major series by the author was horrible. I could not plow through "Molly Fyde" and put it away about about 50 pages. That has discouraged me from reading the author's other books.

  10. DMac:

    I read it earlier this year, after hearing about it as an indicator of the power of self-publishing and eBook only projects. I thought it was quite entertaining,

  11. Solomon Foster:

    If nothing else, it may help confused people understand why the second series of the radio shows is incredibly unfaithful adaptation of the books. Namely of course that it isn't an adaptation; rather when turning the shows into books, Adams straightened out the plot and dumped something like a third of the material.