First off, I sincerely hope the authors are (or, you know, were) VERY good friends with “NYTbestsellingauthorHughHowey”. Actually, I would harbor a strong suspicion that one (or both) of the authors IS Hugh Howey … except … I loved Wool. I didn’t love this.
See, there is a rather large difference between “trying to be funny” and “being funny”. This I realized in spades while listening to Ben Aaronovitch’s [book:Foxglove Summer], which, while not constructed as a comic novel, made me laugh out loud quite often, seemingly without even trying. Legendarium tried very, very hard – so hard – but … I did more cringing than anything.
Why use Hugh Howey’s name and then change “Wool” to “Cotton”? What’s the point? Is that supposed to be funny?
The writing was awkward, with the same word sometimes awkwardly being used in the same sentence. (See what I did there?) The plot made me think of nothing so much as a handful of spaghetti. It’s an unoriginal idea done badly. The tone was juvenile. Not the content or the story – I don’t mean that this was a book suitable for or meant for children, not if any parents have any sense. No, I mean that the authors’ mindset seemed to be that of 13-year-old boys. I found it shocking that there were no details about toilet functions in the lifepod.
Worst of all, though, is the fact that the two main characters are complete and utter idiots. I have a hard time enjoying a book – like Wuthering Heights – in which there isn’t a character I can like. I’m even less likely to enjoy a book in which I’m expected to spend time with idiots; I don’t have much patience for fools in any setting, fictional or nonfictional. But – ok, the two “heroes” are completely annoying morons, and they utterly failed in their first mission. But here’s the thing: how could they possibly not fail? How is it possible to successfully complete a mission when not only do you not know what the parameters of said mission are, but you don’t even know there IS a mission? In plain spoilerese, they had no way of knowing they ought to snatch up some borogroves – and, moreover, had no way of knowing what the damn things were. So. Yeah. They failed. Yeah, they were idiots not to say “Hm – sword on a spaceship. Let’s grab it, just in case “, but there’s no contesting the fact that they’re idiots.
If I never hear the word “doughnut” again, I’ll be just as happy.