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Comment: This book has already been loved by someone else. It MIGHT have some wear and tear on the edges, have some markings in it, or be an ex-library book. Over-all itâ?TMs still a good book at a great price! (if it is supposed to contain a CD or access code, that may be missing)
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Dust City Hardcover

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 630L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Razorbill; First Edition edition (September 30, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1595142967
  • ISBN-13: 978-1595142962
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 6.2 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #304,085 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Once upon a time was a long time ago in Henry Whelp’s city. Now, the fairies are gone, and with them, their magical fairydust. Corporations manufacture synthetic dust to sell over the counter, while uncut nixiedust gets hawked by shady foxes in dark alleyways. But Henry never touches the stuff since his father went berserk and murdered a red-hooded girl and her granny on behalf of a golden-touch gangster named Skinner. See, dust is the stuff of miracles and fulfills destinies, which is fine if you’re a princess, but can lead to a big bad fate for a wolf like Henry. The premise is fractured fairy tale, but the play is pure noir: Chinatown via the Brothers Grimm. Henry gets in deep with Skinner’s crew to exonerate his dad and trips his way into a scheme to return the animalia (wolves, ravens, and the like) to their primitive state. The ending feels like it’s missing a twist or two, but the clever setup and gutting of fairy-tale tropes will garner plenty of enthusiasm. Grades 7-10. --Ian Chipman


"Weston deftly tucks his fairy-tale tropes into this thought-provoking mystery." --Kirkus

"Weston has created a tightly paced mystery, a coming of age story, and a vivid fantasy...Dust City is a winner." --Quill and Quire

"Dust City is so creative...As soon as I read the first page, I was hooked." --Teens Read Too

"Clever use of iconic characters and fairytale symbols against a hardboiled backdrop contribute to Weston's distinctive and highly imaginative mise en scène." --Publishers Weekly

Customer Reviews

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See all 24 customer reviews
Were there really talking wolves and elves and goblins all living together.
Heather Pearson
Dust City by Robert Paul Weston is a young adult novel that is both a fractured fairy tale and a work of noir fiction.
Amazon Customer
He was an easy character to connect with and I really enjoyed reading his story.
Dark Faerie Tales

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By DAC VINE VOICE on October 29, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Henry Whelp is in a Home for Wayward Wolves for misdemeanor. Any other wolf wouldn't be serving time but Henry's father known as the big bad wolf. The wolf who killed Little Red Riding Hood and her grandmother. Everyone's worried Henry will be just like his father.

Dust City is filled with popluar fairy tale characters. It populated by hominids, wolves, foxes, ravens, basically all animals living together. Over time all the animals have evolved. Wolves can speak with ease and work on two legs. The mules are the slowest to change.

"I ignore Jack's request. I'm watching a trio of mules play cards at the folding table. From an evolutionary point of view, mules were the last to get wise, so to speak. Their forehoofs aren't anything like those of hominids or wolves. Mules evolved differently, with hooves that became jointed, crablike claws - ebony pincers, offset by a stubby opposbale thumb. They have never been reviled like wolves, or mistrusted like foxes and ravens. As always they are largely ignored. I'm guilty of it myself. I don't even know these guys names."

The nimble and quick Jack (Beanstalk) is a thief. He is also Henry's best friend and the only hominid at the Home for Wayward Wolves. Henry is big enough to impose is power on the smaller animals but that is not in his nature. Right from the beginning this is something very likable about Henry. When Henry comes across some evidence that maybe his father wasn't in his right mind when he committed murder, he is determined to find out the truth. Henry believes fairydust, a drug many crave is to blame. There is a whole underworld that caters to its users. Henry goes undercover to work for his father's old boss Skinner.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Heather Pearson on July 21, 2011
Format: Hardcover
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.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Elizabeth on January 23, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Dust City is different from any book I have ever read. I would classify it as a fairy tale re-imagining, but it is so much more than that. The main character, Henry Whelp, has had to live his whole life being the son of the big, bad wolf who killed Little Red Riding Hood and her grandmother. He has a bad reputation and is in a form of juvie because he is a wolf even though he has not done anything wrong. Dust City is a world where selling synthetic fairy dust is the main money source. Synthetic fairy dust replaced true fairy dust ever since the fairies disappeared. Fairy dust is pretty much the it drug of Dust City. Anyways, Henry escapes juvie because he believes he knows where the fairies are hiding and there is a chance he can clear his father's name.

I definitely enjoyed this book because it was so original. Robert Paul Weston took the story of the big, bad wolf and made it his own. I loved that some common fairy tale characters were in Dust City. Snow White came into the story as Detective White, a kick butt kind of character who could definitely hold her own. Cindy Rella (Cinderella) wears uncomfortable looking glass heels. Of course there is also Henry's best friend, Jack, from Jack and the Beanstalk.

Henry meets his partner in crime, Fiona, while he is at his Home for Wayward Wolves. Fiona is one smart she-wolf who cares more about her troubled brother, Roy, than she probably should. I liked Fiona because she is non-judgmental. It was nice to see her not judge Henry and actually look for the best in him. My favorite part of the book was whenever they were together.

If you like fairy tale retellings, you will definitely enjoy this book. It is amusing and fun to read! There is a fairly intense torture scene to look out for, but I think most of us can handle it. The story is interesting, and the world that Robert Paul Weston has created is intriguing.
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