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First and foremost, it’s important to realize that this story proceeds along an alternate ending to WOOL. It can be a bit jarring at first if you’re not fully prepared, but the hints are recognizable and are helpful in filling in the edges of this new take on the end of the first book in the Silo Saga.
That said, things have changed in Silo 18 in the twenty-odd years since Juliette survived to become mayor. Cleanings have become a thing to celebrate, not just because they preserve the view outside, but because the boys who perform them actually come back. And they truly are boys, the youngest celebrities of the silo.
Petra, Tavi, and Nick worship the cleaners, the so-called Wolverines. When they finally get the chance to meet and mix with them, though, things quickly come to an unexpected and life-altering end.
This was my first experience with Paul’s work and I was very impressed with the story overall. The writing was crisp, and the YA/young adult format is a welcome addition to Hugh Howey’s ever-expanding World of WOOL. I’d like to see more like this. Maybe even a sequel? Eh, Paul?
I have read over 30 different Silo stories and this is one of the best in the short story category. Writing from the perspective of a team of teen cleaners was both refreshing and compelling. The characters were well flushed out and the tragic circumstances were both realistic and described in excellent detail. I highly recommend "Recoil" and encourage Paul to keep on writing. Well done.
A well written story full of tension and teen angst. This story isn't a typical Silo story, it doesn't cover rebellion or discovery so much but it does effectively imagine how teenagers might live in this world. Replace vampires with cleaners and you have Twilight in a Silo.
Paul Kohler has shown, with just a few stories under his belt thus far, that he can handle characters. In Recoil, he takes on Hugh Howey's WOOL Universe with a young adult-themed story and does so with ease. Kohler deftly takes a story with political and social ramifications and shows it from a young adult perspective. While I didn't always agree with their actions, working with teenagers I understand they make some selfish and sometimes irrational decisions. We see those decisions in Recoil through the eyes of teenage girls Petra and and Tavi. In the end, those decisions lead to some serious consequences for the characters. Kohler has once again shown his mastery of characters - this time putting us into the mind of a teenage girl battling against the adults who would harm her. Young Adult stories haven't been told much in Howey's silos and Kohler's installment is a welcome addition.