The Stronghold continues the 299 Days story with the development of the main town, some development of the lesser characters that are building their own extended households, and more information on the situation in the major cities without effective law enforcement.
We see the main town and some of the lesser characters' locations pull together for security in their respective locations. All of the security is done the same way, though: guard the front gate. There are a couple of other small ideas as well, that I'll leave to your discovery as you read through the books.
In The Stronghold we get another dodge of a big battle. We see some people from the main town go to the neighboring, larger town for supplies and get a good picture of how the author believes things will go in larger towns during a major, long-term breakdown.
Some of these lesser locations start to develop a bit more. We get more information on a functioning family farm with long term guests (the main character's co-workers from The Collapse). The main character's pre-collapse community falls lower as it is led by a semi-psychotic big government resident. A glimpse is presented into the state government workings from the view of a loyalty torn public information mouthpiece. A couple other locations are described along with the how those local economies function with and without government assistance.
The main town's community meetings continue and the main character continues to verbally spar with a man and his followers who disagree. It seems as if the author uses this antagonist as an outlet to explain some of the things he believes, forgoing the need for an all-knowing narrator talking to the reader. For the most part this works, with some awkward moments that don't seem like interactions real people would have.
The books, this one included, end in cliffhangers, reminiscent of the One Thousand and One Arabian Nights. Oh, well. It doesn't hurt anything.
OK, now I wait for the next two books to be released.
The author's blog and the story homepage.