Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Take Tuesday: Shift

Some books are just so good, you have to read them again. And some books deserve a second chance. And some books I think about and change my opinion or have more to say. Take Tuesday is a chance to do just that. 

Title: Shift
Author: Hugh Howey
Publication Date: 1/28/13
Pages: 520
Previous Readings: 2013
Date Completed This Time: 8/19/16

Summary: Donald is a new congressman working in Washington with formidable Senator Thurman. The Senator has some strange projects to share. Troy wakes from his cryonic state to work a shift in an underground silo with few memories of the world before and little understanding of how he got into his position. In other silos, fear pushes people to extreme reactions. This all, of course, eventually ties together and in with the story of Juliette from the first novel, Wool

What I Thought Before: My first post about this book includes a wonderful summary, so if you're looking for that, make sure you head back to that 2013 post. The post itself is mostly summary, thought it's clear I was head over heels for the series. I mentioned several times how I could not put it down. I missed Juliette back then, but I was excited to see the puzzles pieces of fictional history coming together.

What I Think Now: This reading was a lot different. So much of what propelled me through Shift the first time was the urgent need to know what happens next. To Juliette. To Silo 18. To Solo. To Donald. To Troy. To everyone. I pushed through as fast as I possibly could with an insatiable desire for information, which Howey delivers well. I barely came up for air that last time, much less to ponder the literary technique or character development.

This time, knowing what happens, I was able to digest the story and characters more, taking the time to know them and their inner turmoil. I did not have to race through to the finish line; I could enjoy the journey. And I sure did. Nothing can change or recreate the magic of reading a book like this for the first time and the thrill of putting the pieces together for the first time. However, I found it just as satisfying to take this route through the narrative. This may be a silly metaphor, but it's like marriage: nothing returns those early days of butterflies and giddy firsts, but longevity brings depth and connection that could never have been possible in those early stages. Both are fun, both are valuable, both have their place in time.

I did still miss Juliette in this reading, though not as much as I did the first time around. I started out already mildly connected to Donald from my last reading, which certainly helped the absence of Juliette. Still, I am excited to launch into Dust sometime soon and return to Silo 18. Juliette, I think, has become one of my favorite fictional heroines in the past few years, so I look forward to connecting with her once more for the conclusion of the series.

Quote I Loved:

Rating: ★★★★☆
Will I Re-Read: Yes
If You Liked This Try: Station Eleven / The Dead Lands / The Passage
Other Books By Hugh Howey: Wool / Dust

A Reduced Review: This second reading gave me the chance to connect with characters and relish in their journey; I enjoyed that process just as much as my frenzied, thrilling first read. 

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