The thing I like about this series is each book brings something new to the table. WOOL introduced the world within the silo(s) and some of the interesting characters that inhabit it. SHIFT gave readers the answers to how the silo(s) came about and provided context and rationale to the story behind WOOL whilst also linking the events of the two books into a semi prequel/sequel. DUST again brings new elements to the rich, yet densely contained world author Hugh Howey has created by virtue of an outside hope, determined protagonist further evolved from WOOL, and an expansion upon the events that have unfolded in the preceding books.
For me, DUST is the highlight of the series. Not only does it takes readers on a new journey but also defines the core characters, casting them in distinctly humanist light without diluting the ‘road to ruin nature’ which led to the creation of the silos.
Howey does leave the door slightly ajar for further instalments which may/may not be directly related to DUST and silos 17, 18 and 1 (the prime featured silos). There are 50 other possibilities and hundreds of years’ worth of cleanings, uprisings, and mayor elects questioning the order to explore.
As Howey writes at the end of the edition I read; the characters live longer than the book, the story resonates, and this is not the end (I’m paraphrasing). That’s good enough hope for me.