Review: Wool: The Graphic Novel

Wool: The Graphic Novel
Wool: The Graphic Novel by Hugh Howey

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Wow! I was blown away by the original novel, and so intrigued by the world of the Silos; so experiencing it again in graphic novel form was wonderful!

I love the artwork, and the mystery. There’s a lot of good suspense put into place just by how the panels are set up and how the dialogue follows from one page to the next. The colors reflect the mood of each chapter, and I love how darkness and light are used to portray the darkness of their ignorance.

I really enjoyed how each character was drawn just the way I had imagined them! And the way the stairs look was exactly what I had pictured. Seeing my imagination coming to life on the page was exciting!

It definitely tells a good story, but I was disappointed that we didn’t see much of what the Silo actually looks like. It’s a lot of close-ups on people’s faces, and I didn’t really get a good sense of how the Silo functions as a whole. What are ordinary people doing while all the mysterious intrigue is going on? What are the day to day routines of the Silo? The world-building was lacking in this graphic novel. Of course, I know that a graphic novel has to condense the original story, but I would have liked a little more set-up for the world.

Same thing with the characters. There is a big focus on plot to the detriment of the characters. Almost all character-building or character development is completely lacking. At least in the original book, the characters had a little more time to interact, build relationships, establish some history, and grow into a complex person.

Even the original story didn’t give me as much character focus as I like to see, but this graphic adaptation just jumped from plot point to plot point without giving us any time to even guess who the characters might really be. The result is that the characters are flat. We don’t really care about them, because we are barely given time to learn their names or faces.
(Of course, I cared about the characters because I had already read the original story and I was greeting familiar names and faces that I already knew.)

I don’t know if I’m disappointed or happy about this book. I definitely enjoyed reading it! Read it all in one go, and couldn’t put it down! Beautiful art, excellent writing, but just needed some better macro-editing, I think. I guess what makes me frustrated is that it COULD have been so much better. The story has so much potential to be even more amazing, and it’s sad to see a mediocre story instead. So much of the original story is lost, and all that depth of the world is gone, but I did enjoy the lovely art.

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