Rating clarification 2.
5 StarsMy lower rating is no reflection of the quality of the book it s actually written quite well and the possibilities are there for the making of a creative story I think simply put it just wasn t for me Maybe too young for my taste Possibly a level of bizarre I couldn t quite grasp Not sure Overall, the premise is unique but definitely outlandish and as I said before very bizarre The main character Henry Whelp is likeable and engaging and the setting well I never really quite grasp that so I can t give too much of an opinion there When I started to read this book, I wasn t prepared to suspend my reality to an undetermined level How far was I expected to stretch my imagination I was trying to wrap my brain around whether this was paranormal, dark fiction, dystopian, so I settled for it being a dark fairy tale gone array That s the best I can do.
Normally, I include an overview of what the book is about and I m going to attempt to do that, but just be informed, I m not making this up and I haven t lost my marbles yet So here goes Henry Whelp is a wolf, but not just any wolf His father is the infamous convicted murderer of Little Red Riding Hood and her grandmother After a rock throwing incident, Henry is placed in St Remus which is a home for delinquent animalian youth I m assuming you re wondering what that is Okay, let me try to explain You ve got the hominids, which include elves, dwarfs and humans and the animalia, which consist of highly developed wolves, foxes, ravens, mules and hedgehogs capable of speech and interaction with the hominids There are also goblins that are the largest creatures in the city, but I don t quite know where they fit in or the giant that roams the cemetery There are also supernatural forces that are controlled by the nixies that captured the fairies These fairies produce a dust capable of magical possibilities, but since the fairies are being held captive by the nixies, you ve got Nimbus Thaumaturgical Inc now producing a synthetic dust that s nowhere near the level of fairy made dust for purposes that reveal itself as the story unfolds.
Anywho, back to the story Henry escapes St Remus, visits his father and goes on a quest to uncover a plot of crazy proportions Yup, that s what it s about, and those of you that know me for my occasional snark and wild imagination, I didn t make any of that up Believe me There were underlying themes that my over stretched imagination was able to glean and I thought they were strategically played out such as segregation of class, how much are you willing to sacrifice to find the truth, can you redefine yourself despite what others believe you to be All good stuff, it s just that the story was not quite what I expected.
Overall, very creative book that I think is tailored for a specific niche of readers Who those readers are, I don t quite know But remember, that s just me I m sure others thought this was great, so there you go I did have a fun time identifying the fairy tale characters that kept popping up throughout the story and here s what I found in the book Henry s best friend Jack Jack and the Beanstalk Detective Snow Snow White Fiona From Shrek Alder Robin Hood The Princess and the Frog get a divorce Skinner RumpelstilskenCindy from St Remum Cinderella Nimbus Nimbus 2000 from HP probably a stretch Starting this book, I was expecting some kind of werewolf story with a few fairytale elements thrown in It turned out that I was way wrong Meet Henry He is a wolf Yes, a wolf Without the were Following some stone throwing incident and due to his father s bad reputation as the murderer of Little Red Riding Hood , he ends up at The St Remus Home for Wayward Youth.
After the unexpected death of one of his only confidants there, and after finding letters from his father that have been kept from him, Henry decides to make an escape He wants to prove his father s innocence and find the fairies who disappeared years ago and with them the magic of their dust even if that means he has to work for the most dangerous criminal in the whole city.
Weston has definitely created an original world with Dust City The premise of this book is unlike anything I ve read before It is dark and creepy, staring a lot of fairytale characters gone wrong It is home to all kinds of creatures animalia wolves, ravens, mules and and hominids dwarves, goblins It even brings up issues such as discriminations and segregations between those two groups.
But it lacks something I can t really pinpoint what it is, but it made the book only okay for me.
First of all, the author somehow fails to create a believing picture of the wolves or maybe my imaginations is too weak for that It was hard for me to envision what they should look like They were simply portrayed as animals walking on two legs instead of four and wearing clothes.
Secondly, the characters, especially Henry, remain kind of flat and therefore I never felt any true attachment The book focuses mainly on the action and adventure part, and the aspects making out a character, such as his relationships with others for example, are only treated briefly Henry s voice the story is told from his perspective never felt distinctive to me.
Thirdly, some characters are introduced just to vanish be hurt and then not be mentioned again You can t be sure what happened to them and funnily enough, Henry never thinks about them again, either.
And finally, at some parts of the story, I wanted to hit the characters for their stupidity They walk into situations of extreme danger without a real plan maybe check if one of the villains is sneaking up on you next time, huh and get caught in surprise in at least two or three cases, resulting in them being held prison, then escaping again You get the picture.
I had problems deciding if I should give this book two or three stars It certainly isn t bad in terms of writing plot I can imagine that a lot of people would enjoy it quite a bit, especially if they are into novels that have a lot of action and suspense, but don t mind if the part focusing on relationships remains small.
For me, though, it lacked important aspects I look for in a story So I m settling for two stars here.
originally posted CSI Librarian This book is absolutely magic, full of dark fairy tales and really fascinating characters that put the grim in Grimm s Fairy Tales The skill with which Weston writes was exhilarating and I had a very hard time putting this book down I refuse to give this awesome plot away, but here are some of the many reasons why I had to give Dust City 5 stars.
The real power of this story comes from Henry being so likeable and relatable Yes his problems are out there in a lot of ways, but he s also dealing with trying to find a way to be defined not only by his father s actions but by his own As someone who seems to continually pick up books where the main character frustrates me to no end, Henry Whelp was just the cure for my reading blues He was such a sweet, troubled wolf and a terrific character to follow along from start to finish.
The world was also fantastic, and while it had some elements common to fairy tale modernizations, I felt there was a lot of originality at work I like the idea of the fairies being gone, for example, and that all they ve left is a ruined world where people are forced to manufacture their own fairydust that doesn t work out nearly as well as the real thing Weston s vision is darker than most and easier to get immersed in.
I really liked a lot of less modernized fairy tales were added to the mix such as Hans My Hedgehog and The Girl Without Hands I had a blast trying to figure out who certain minor characters were in cases where it wasn t obvious I was pleased to see Snow White as a cop, Jack as a teenage con artist and Rumplestiltskin as a mobster I also loved that there were so many animal characters as well and all of them living in the same sort of way humans did but with some discrimination since not everyone in Dust City approves of talking animals.
So for those in need of a change from the typical dystopian trilogy but wanting something with a lot of umph to it or anyone who has enjoyed Bill Willingham s Fables, I heartily suggest taking a look at this book I have a feeling it s become lost in the shuffle and really ought to be appreciated I found it delightfully refreshing to read about a teenage wolf Not a werewolf, not a shape shifter and not a wolf who can become a boy if he wants to, but an actual wolf, and not just a wolf but the son of the Big Bad Wolf It doesn t get much better than that.
I decided to give up on this book and base my rating on the story so far It s not that I don t like it, but my current mood really can t take much of this It doesn t feel right to quit, but it doesn t feel right to read it either So I ll probably pick it up again later, when I m in a positive state of mind.
Apologies to my Street Corner Friends.
Henry Whelp is a good wolf He s never gotten into any trouble Nevertheless, he finds himself in juvie after he breaks a truck window His father is the Big Bad Wolf of Little Red Riding Hood fame, and everyone is just waiting for Henry to go bad Henry eventually finds out that his father believes he was framed See, George was working for Dust City s version of the mafia They make their money by selling synthetic fairy dust to the population now that the fairies have disappeared But what exactly caused them to disappear in the first place I love the whole idea of this book The synopsis reminds me a little of Jasper Fforde s Nursery Crime series I enjoy those, so I thought this could be a winner for me and it was.
Henry is a nice guy who just can t get a break He ends up in the wrong place at the wrong time pretty frequently He tries to do his best, but no one is looking for that they re only looking for his mistakes He finally just has to take matters into his own hands and start following the clues to their conclusion.
Along the way he meets a female wolf, Fiona Fiona is a smart little hottie She actually sees the best in Henry Her brother is a real trouble maker, but he actually has some good points, so she s used to looking for the good in people.
The mystery twisted and turned and I had no idea where it was going When it s all resolved, it makes perfect sense, but it s darker than I expected There are some slightly disturbing parallels between the book and humanity s darkest times That s all I say It didn t bother me, I don t think it would bother most readers, but it did surprise me a little.
I enjoyed playing spot the fairytale character, and they showed up in some very unexpected places I always get a kick out of that.
If the synopsis appeals to you at all, read this one It s a fast, entertaining read that I thoroughly enjoyed I even find myself hoping that I ll get to read another book starring Henry and Fiona in the future.
Reason for Reading I m a big fan of books with fairy tale characters in a modern setting.
The publisher s summary had me believing that this fantasy was going to be some sort of mystery adventure as the son of the big bad wolf tried to prove his innocence I was not prepared for the gritty, urban fantasy world that I was about to enter This is a dark, harsh world that imagines what would have happened if Grimm s medieval fairy tale characters had evolved into bi pedal, speaking creatures integrated with the human population Henry Whelp, whose father is in prison for killing a girl and her grandmother, is in detention centre for wayward youth, but mainly animalia, and especially wolves He doesn t want to follow in his father s footsteps and visits his psychiatrist every week But when the doctor is found hanging from the rafters one fine day, Henry discovers some secrets and manages to escape Dust City is the major producer of fairydust since the fairies all took off and left and in trying to prove his father s innocence he is lead on a trail that takes him to the depths of the city s grimy underworld, and learns horrendous secrets about the missing fairies.
This was a non stop read for me Highly entertaining and suspenseful, plot driven with lots of action The cast is a motley crew of creatures from giants and goblins to a lovable elven grandma Henry is the only one with a full development of background and motivators but all the characters come across enough to have feelings for or against them in this action driven novel It is dark, harsh and gritty There is violence, bullying, torture and everything else not nice, with a few uncomfortable scenes, but never beyond age appropriateness Dust City is a book you can really get your teeth into Mostly populated with male characters, there do come into play two perhaps we can say three strong females who carry important roles in the plot.
I was very impressed with this novel, absolutely loved the story and it s dark, gritty tale A must add to any urban fantasy enthusiast s bookshelf Henry Whelp Is A Big Bad Wolf Or Will Be,someday The Only Son Of The Infamous Red Riding Hood Killer, Henry Is Worried That He May Be Following In His Father S Violent Footsteps He Tries To Distance Himself From His Past, And Avoids The Other Teens At St Remus Home For Wayward Youth, A Detention Centre In Dust City A Rundown, Gritty Metropolis Known For Its Production Of Fairydust But When Henry S Psychiatrist Turns Up Dead, Henry Finds Himself On A Trail Of Clues That May Lead To Proof Of His Father S Innocence And The Horrifying Secret Behind Fairydust 3.
5 Stars Henry Whelp is the son of the Big Bad Wolf, who killed Little Red and her grandma and is in prison for his crime Only, Henry finds out that his father might not have been in his right mind when he did it and it s up to Henry to find the real fairies and stop a sinister dwarf gangster named Skinner With the help of his thieving best friend Jack and a wolf named Fiona, Henry will finally get the answers he needs or be destined to be the Big Bad Wolf, himself.
This book is such a freaken riot Dust City is an great book filled with inventive imagination and creepy creativity.
It takes some of our most beloved childhood storybook characters like Cinderella, Snow White, Little Red, Jack and the Beanstalk, David and Goliath, etc, and spins a modern dark tale of mystery, suspense and even a little romance.
Every character is written well They are easy enough to recognize from our story books but twisted into characters that mold perfectly with the dark fairy tale theme I adored Henry, he s like a giant teddy bear in wolves clothing, or well fur, with the greatest personality He s sweet, caring, loyal and I loved that he stayed that way through out the whole story.
I actually enjoyed all the characters, Roy surprised me in the end which I found kinda funny, Fiona is a sweetheart and Jack is awesome I even loved the side characters like Old Jerry, who was such a trip Even the evil played there parts well Each and every one of them brought something into this book.
The plot was very dark, creepy and completely original I enjoyed the world that Weston created, it s very vivid and felt like a cross between an animation and something Tim Burton would have a field day with.
All in all this was an enjoyable read, it s different and entertaining Anyone who likes twisted up dark tales should get a kick out of Dust City