The reset button: Wool/Silo series

aka World Order Operation Fifty.

The prophet has different plans for taking out the USG and Cathedral.  Some involve game changing technological/sociological advances like secession/cryptography/seasteading.  Others have to do with setting up a rival to the Cathedral that would take over via increased perceived legitimacy.

My favorites though are the ones involving outright taking over of power and hitting the reset button.  These usually take the outright seizing of sovereign power according to some program.  There is historical precedent which is both criticized for being unrealistic and yet viewed as possible with modifications (some Party attaining victory with exclusive goal of completely reorganizing govt as we know it along reactionary lines, whether absolute monarchy or neocameralism).

And of course, the most straightforward and time tested one of all:  the military coup.  The problem with the military coup is that while it is possible quite easily if enough of the upper echelons of the military agree to it, the conditions for that to happen require the almost total loss of civilization first.  And the more loyal and used to civilian leadership the armed forces are, the worst said conditions have to be before they step in.  The Anglo-Saxon world such as it is is not Brazil or even France.  Imagining how bad the economy/social breakdown would have to be before they decide to say enough is a frightening thought experiment indeed.

There is something to post-apocalyptic fiction that naturally makes it beholden to reactionaries.  And so your author was quite pleasantly surprised indeed to come across the Silo series.

Wool begins the series.  The basic gist is that for some unknown reason all that remains of our species lives within a silo underground.  Why?  What happened?  Why can no on remember?  You know what, just read the following nine pages excerpt free online.

Have you read it?

Good stuff, right?  Gripping?  How bleak an ending was that?  While not incredibly original, the execution is quite flawless for those 9 pages and for most of the first book.  The mystery of what happened, who knows/who doesn’t, and above all WHY.

The first two books, Wool and Shift, are very good.  Wool sets the stage and the world, and Shift explains what happened and how we got there. Sadly, the conclusion, Dust, left much to be desired of, sinking to some basic cliches (in particular a very stupid shoehorned religious angle).  But the first two are gripping page turners of a dark world.  And the gradual revelation of what happened and why is as NRx as any I have read.

I will in short order write a separate post discussing it in more detail, but it will be filled with spoilers.  My recommendation?  Buy (or just dl the books online, the author is on the record saying he’s ok with this) the books and enjoy the mystery and reveal for yourselves.  And then come back to discuss the implications.

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