“Dust” ends my six-month compulsion with the Silo Saga by Hugh Howey. This series, which began with a short story in 2011, was self-published on Amazon by the author. The first story story was joined by four others to create “Wool,” which told the story of a post-apocalypic world in which people live underground in silos because the earth has been poisoned. The heroine is Juliette who defies the rigid structure of the silo and myths of what lies beyond the silo. The second book, “Shift,” is a prequel to “Wool” and tells us how the silo came to be. Its ending intersects with the ending of “Wool.”
“Dust” takes up the story as Juliette defies the rulers of the silo world in the name of freedom, and eventually wages war against them. She sacrifices much to lead a small band of believers to a better life.
I am being purposely vague about the story because I don’t want to spoil the story. There are many surprises as Juliette discovers the secrets of this future world. Howey’s insights into human nature and his creation of this alternate world strike me as believable, which is what I look for in science fiction. This is the best sci-fi book I’ve read since “The Sparrow” and “Children of God” by Mary Doria Russell.
As a writer and author, I am pleased that a self-publishing author has found success. It goes to prove that there are many great writers and stories out there that escape the attention of agents and publishers. I think we will be seeing more great books coming from the self-published world in the future.