Sunday, 3 July 2011

Under the Midnight Sun Readathon - update 3 & review: Dust City by Robert Paul Weston

Our 24 hours of Canadian reading is entering it final hours. 

Reading so far:
1 hour audiobook
12 hours written
6 hours sleeping (it's no good reading once my eyes are closed, I miss too much plot).

Dust City by Robert Paul Weston

Why did I leave this sitting on my shelf unread for so long.  It was enchanting, or rather, it was the characters that were enchanted.  Fairy magic in the form of 'dust' is an every day commodity in Dust City.  It used to be made by real fairies, but they have long since fled and now it is a manufactured product.  Not as good as the original, but still magical and mostly effective.

Henry Whelp has been locked away in juvie for a while now with the other wolves.  Yes, wolves, foxes, goblins and all other sorts of animals have achieved sentience and live along side the hominids.  It's not a perfect relationship between them, but it works for the most part.   When his friend Jack, the guy with the magic beans, shows him some letters from his dad, the big bad wolf who killed the little girl and her grandmother, Henry starts to question many of the so called truths that he's been told.

As I started reading this story, I'll admit that I was a bit confused.  Were there really talking wolves and elves and goblins all living together.  I wasn't too sure about the characters who seemed quite familiar, almost like beings out of the Grimms Brothers' Fairy Tales.  (that was intentional according to author Robert Paul Weston).  By about page 30, my confusion was clearing and total enjoyment setting in.

I had no trouble believing that all these animal like beings were living together and in many cases cross-species friendships had flourished.  Once Henry realized that he didn't have to go through this as a lone wolf and he called on his friends for help, the story really took off.  This is a FUN story made all the more entertaining each time I realized a character was based on a Grimm's character.  This is not a children's book as it included much mayhem and murder, though YA and adults will both find it a gripping read.  Most definitely on my recommend list.

Thank-you to Penguin Books for my review copy.


Jules said...

The books sounds like an odd read. But sounds like you enjoyed it, and did well in the read-a-thon.

Melwyk said...

That sounds fascinating...I hadn't heard of it. Grimm's, fairy dust, sentient wolves...I will have to read it :)

Em said...

I'm mixed about it. I am not too much into fantasy, but I find the fact that some of the characters are based on Grimms' fairy tales characters attractive. I would have to reread Grimm first though...