It’s been a while since I read Wool. Long enough that I’d started to forget the general shape of things, but as I went through First Shift: Legacy, things started to come back. It’s interesting seeing the gaps in Wool’s history.
That being said, the prequel chapters (of a prequel) just feel wrong. The Silos were built in a matter of years by the government? With apparently minimal or no leaks? Run by a Senator which apparently gets two Representatives to do his absolute bidding (What about their own jobs? It would have made more sense had Donald remained an architect).
On the other hand, the chapters set 200 years later in the Silos themselves, those (ironically) felt more real. There’s a reason for Troy to have so out of it–drugs are a hell of a drug–and it’s a world where absolute control makes far more sense. And as the story goes on and we (as readers) fill in the gaps between the two timelines? That’s where the story really shines.
Overall, it’s a fascinating bit of worldbuilding that answers a few questions I didn’t remember having from Wool. Well worth the read and I’m curious to see where it goes from here.
Side note: There are a number of reviews commenting on the sexism / homophobia of having only the men awake in order to avoid ‘passion’. Sure. But given the authoritarian nature of the entire project? I feel like it fits the world. I hope it’s something dealt with in the Second Shift: Order / Third Shift: Pact.