Dust : The Silo Saga

  • by Hugh Howey
  • Narrated by Tim Gerard Reynolds
  • Series: The Silo Saga
  • 12 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Wool introduced the silo and its inhabitants. Shift told the story of their making. Dust will chronicle their undoing. Welcome to the underground.

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Customer Reviews

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Meanders, then races to a satisfying conclusion

I'd guess most folks who read Wool and Shift are going to want to read Dust whether or not it's great so I don't think it needs a big review. Short and sweet - Dust isn't as well written as Shift, but it did provide a satisfying conclusion to the trilogy. My recommendation is a definite, "Go For It"; you'll get your Audible credit's worth with this one.

A little longer and less sweet, I was somewhat disappointed in Dust partly because Shift was so good. Shift was a big step up from Wool in pacing, plotting, and great prose so I had expectations that Howey would continue that trend in Dust and the book would be at least as good as Shift or maybe better. Dust is better written than Wool, but it doesn't have the sustained narrative tension of Shift.

Shift ends with Juliette threatening Silo 1 so I expected Dust to begin fast and furious with that conflict. Instead, Dust begins with Juliette totally focused on rescuing the Silo 17 survivors to the point of dereliction of her mayoral duties. Her people have lost faith in her (no real explanation for that) so much of the book is treading familiar ground; a visionary who doesn't communicate well trying to lead a bunch of stampeding sheep type people. In addition, we get some updates and further development of Solo and the Silo17 children, but I found much of that more irritating than interesting. The dialogue for those characters makes them sound naive and gullible, but I think they would be tougher and more "silo-smart" for having made it on their own for so long. There are also several sections given over to Elise's (the 7 year old Silo 17 survivor) pursuit of a puppy and a weird religious cult and their rituals. Both of these subplots really lead nowhere and slow the overall plot progression. (And, really, neither the girl nor any adults around her can figure out that they need to put a leash on that dog?)

On the other hand, I loved the Silo 1 sections of the book and the further character development of Charlotte (Donald's sister) was great. After some stumbling about a bit through the first half of the book, the second half is tighter and more interesting and when the final resolution comes, it's over almost too fast. I had the sense that given more time and editing, Howey could have made this conclusion really great. As it is, there are some dangling plot points and Dust doesn't have the grace of Shift, but it is still a very good read and it definitely provides a satisfying end to the trilogy. It also leaves the door WIDE open for sequels...

Audible listeners have the added benefit of narration by Tim Gerard Reynolds. The more I hear this guy, the more I like him. His voice keeps me plugged in even when a book gets a little slow. Overall, I recommend the whole Silo Saga Trilogy and I think Hugh Howey has great potential to keep us entertained for many years.
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- Tango

Is this the end of it all or a new beginning?

The Silo Saga enters its final book set up for success. Wool painted a picture of a bleak future where a dystopian underground society is all that manages to keep humanity on the right side of extinction. Shift then revealed who was behind the building of the silos and their published plan for delivering mankind to a better future; however, it also exposed that the official plan intentionally leaves out that a key decision will eventually made about who will and won't survive. All of this makes for excellent backdrop as the characters from both books converge to determine the ultimate fate of mankind.

Hugh Howey sets things up so that multiple factions are vying to determine what will ultimately happen. There is Senator Thurman who is one of the architects of the original plan and also one of the keepers of the final secret. He feels justified that he is doing what must be done to ensure that there is a future for humanity no matter how ruthless his actions are. There is Donald Keene, who now remembers his past and has decided that "doing the right" thing is the best course of action and does his best to counter Thurman's final secret plan. And finally you have Juliette, who has grown up in the silos and wants to now determine her own fate instead of letting either Senator Thurman or Donald dictate the outcome.

Things have certainly gone sideways and it is entirely possible that the actions of one or all of the main characters could cause mankind to go extinct and perhaps rightfully so. Yet each of the perspectives offered has its merits, even Senator Thurman's, and it is never clear which path is best. Thurman fears that if you let everyone determine their own fate then mankind will just return to the same brink of destruction that it was on when he enacted his bold plan. He is probably right but that doesn't prevent Juliette and Donald from doing what humans do as they fight for a different fate from the one Thurman has prescribed for them.

Although it felt like things wrapped up just a bit too quickly at the end it was still a satisfying conclusion to an excellent series. I certainly recommend this series to any fan of apocalyptic tales and I look forward to more from Hugh Howey. With Tim Gerard Reynolds once again doing the narrating the audiobook is an excellent way to experience this unique story and certainly worth your time.
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- Lore

Book Details

  • Release Date: 10-01-2013
  • Publisher: Broad Reach Publishing