Dust City by Robert Paul Weston was about what I expected, and yet nothing what I anticipated. It’s a weird conglomeration of Pulp Mystery, Fairy Tale, and Werewolf tale. It reminds me a touch of Sin City, if Sin City were told about adolescent boys in a Grimm’s Fairy Tale. It’s weird, and good, but it’s imperfect.
Henry Whelp lives in St. Remus, a home for wayward boys. Years ago his Father went mad and killed Red Riding Hood and her Grandmother. Henry fears he will be just like him. In Dust City there is a company called Nimbus Thaumaturgical that manufactures a drug called Fairydust that has magical properties.. guaranteed to work like the Dust of old before the fairies and pixies died, except for one thing; A new Dust is being circulated that claims to be the actual thing. Where is this Dust coming from?
This book had potential to be perfect, but fell short. It’s told in these interesting short chapters, little vignettes of story to make of Henry’s quest to help his Father and find the source of the Dust. It feels like reading a book of fairy tales and like traditional fairy tales there are images both dark and disturbing to occupy the mind. These parts of the book really make it sing. Henry’s story, however, feels overlong. I found myself growing weary the last seventy pages and longing for an end. I wasn’t interested enough in him to enjoy his journey, but I loved who he met along the way – Snow White, Cinderella, Jack climbing up his beanstalk… those parts are all brilliantly worked. The core story though I almost could have done without.
A solid three. I wanted it to be a four, but I skimmed the last chunk. So yeah… 3 out of 5.
– Follow the Reader –