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Dust City

3.46  ·  Rating details ·  1,536 ratings  ·  324 reviews
When your dad is the wolf who killed Little Red Riding Hood, life is no fairy tale.

Henry Whelp is a Big Bad Wolf. Or will be, someday. His dad is doing time for the double murder of Little Red Riding Hood and her grandmother so everyone assumes crime is in Henry's blood. For years, he's kept a low profile in a Home for Wayward Wolves on the outskirts of Dust City--a gritty
Hardcover, 299 pages
Published September 30th 2010 by Razorbill
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Average rating 3.46  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,536 ratings  ·  324 reviews

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Apr 23, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: younger, fantasy, ya
A book about being the son of the Big Bad Wolf really should not be boring. But the Big Bad Wolf is not Big or Bad at all -- he's more like a pathetic little stooge, the two-bit criminal who ends up playing the fall guy for the real masterminds. But still a criminal, someone who could be taken advantage of by the worse guys because of the position he had chosen to put himself in by working for them. He wasn't framed, just foolish. His son Henry Whelp is more of the same. He seems nice enough at ...more
Feb 10, 2011 rated it it was ok
Once upon a time, there lived a much-reviled fairy tale character.

He was reputed to be mean and nasty, but really, he was just a Big Ole Softie!

With the help of some kooky friends...

... he managed to find true love, a kingdom

shrek 2 Pictures, Images and Photos

and Live happily ever after!

(I know the pictures are unnecessary, but it's SHREK!)

... Shrek is everything Dust City is not. Funny, adorable and entertaining as hell! Dust City is what Shrek would be if DreamWorks had lost its mind and decided
Rating clarification: 2.5 Stars

My 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… wel
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 fr
Feb 14, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: boy, fairy-tale, surreal, teen
There are a lot of fairytale retellings out there, but none like this one. Even without the fairytale elements, it would have been a great story: noir-ish-type mystery with lots of action, danger, and suspense, plus a compelling coming-of-age story for the main character who is dealing with grieving for his mother, resenting his father for getting sent to prison, and surviving his own stint in juvie. But then add in the fact that he's a wolf--not a werewolf, but an anthropomorphized wolf with op ...more
Sep 02, 2010 rated it it was ok
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 more 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 more positive state of mind.

Apologies to my Street Corner Friends.
Jun 08, 2011 rated it it was amazing
(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
JG (Introverted Reader)
What if the Big Bad Wolf was framed?

That's all the synopsis I want to give, but I'll give you more.

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 b
Nicola Mansfield
Oct 25, 2010 rated it it was amazing
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 integr
Aug 16, 2010 rated it liked it
(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 freake
I feel so bad about giving up, because "Dust City" is really easy to read and I would leaf through the remaining hundred pages in a blink. But I am too lazy to invest the time, because I know it will not chance my opinion - or my life, or even my day. It's too late for that after two thirds.

As we all had the same difficulties with the visuals: I imagined the evolved-towards-human-standards-intelligence animalia dystopian-fairytale-retelling-setting to be a nightmare-turned world of the Calico Cr
Feb 07, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: on-my-shelf, 2016
3,5 stars
I picked this book up on a whim a while back, when it was on offer at a favorite discount store here. I'd never heard of it before, but thought that it looked interesting, and for $2.99 I'm willing to chance it.

So now I've read it, and... well... There were some things that I liked, and some things that didn't work for me.

I liked the interweaving of fairytale characters into the story. I thought that the way it was done was pretty neat. But I felt like they were all just kind of name-dropped,

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 Cit
Kate McDowell
Sep 24, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm surprised by the lackluster reviews, because this is a very original YA fantasy that takes familiar fairy tale elements and spins them into a very dark, violent, and yet vibrant world. Although the main character is the much less fierce son of the Big Bad Wolf, the main mystery here is: where is all the fairy dust coming from now that the fairies appear to be gone or in hiding? It's a sinister ending and the entire book foreshadows it with violence and suspense, so that it's an extremely wel ...more
Nov 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this book. I love twists on fairy tales. This book reminded me of the video game the wolf among us in a lot of ways. I thought it well written and the plot was fantastic. I would recommend this to anyone who like the wolf among us or dark magic. I loved how the author entwined all of the old fairytale to create this masterpiece. I thought his take on them was just incredible and I would re read it in a second.
Fiendishly Bookish
Dust City so named for its legacy of fairy dust, that incomprehensible gift of luck, destiny, or your worst nightmare bestowed by benevolent fairies has dried up. And in its place, corruption and avarice has gripped a once thriving and vibrant city with a class struggle.

Hominids and animalia stand apart, as do elves, water nixies, goblins and all manner of non-human species. And at the forefront, flashing like a neon sign, is the on-going mystery of the disappearance of the fairies from Eden wh
Jessica Strider
Apr 02, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: urban-fantasy
Pros: wonderful world-building, great characters, some humour

Cons: some unpleasant descriptions

When the fairies vanished other hominid species moved into their home on the floating island of Eden and started mining the dust they left behind. Though the dust isn’t as potent as what the fairies once used, it can cure minor ailments, and the hominids and animalia in the city below are hooked.

Henry Whelp is the son of a convicted drug runner and murderer. Though he’s a good kid, a bad decision lands
Sarah  Perry
Feb 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing
From the moment I opened up the envelope containing Dust City, I was immediately captured by this seemingly dark cover. The skyline shooting up through the silvery dust clouds, with the glowing green eyes in the background is so attractive and really made me want to know what this book was actually about. If I had of had the time, I would have read it all in the same day, it was that good.

The story started off with a little bit of build up, and introducing the characters at St. Remus, a Home fo
There are some books that you really didn't think were your type. Your genre. The kind of stuff you usually don't read and don't expect to read but then when you do end up reading a book outside your usual genre, it impresses the socks off you and reminds you that there are many more adventures to be had should you dare to step off the safe path.

This was what reading Dust City felt like to me. I don't do anthropomorphic main characters. I really don't. But I love fairy tales and the synopsis won
Canadian Children's Book Centre
Ever since his father’s arrest for the double murder of Little Red Riding Hood and her grandmother, everyone has assumed that Henry Whelp has crime in his blood. For years Henry has lived in a Home for Wayward Wolves on the outskirts of Dust City — a gritty metropolis known for its black-market, mind-altering dust. When a murder at the home forces Henry to escape, he begins to suspect that his father may have been framed. With the help of a daring she-wolf named Fiona, Henry travels into the dar ...more
Joni Thomas
Jul 22, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This is one of those books that are constantly on your mind, long after you have marked your page and closed it. The world created was so believable that I almost forgot that it doesn't exist. It's hard to call it is a fantasy book, because fantasy implies that a kind of dream, and in Dust City there is nothing dreamy about it. The subject of fairy dust, talking animals, and a mobster dwarf are written about so convincingly that it is hard to believe it is not real.
I loved Henry from the beginni
Sep 26, 2011 rated it really liked it
I am so charmed by Robert Paul Weston. It's shocking to me that I'd never heard of him, or this book, before I stumbled on this taking books off New status.

Henry is in juvie. His dad is a former drug runner, currently locked up for killing a girl and her grandma. Henry escapes juvie, visits his dad, and is told that the drugs he was running may have been actual fairydust, something that's been extinct for years.

Did I mention that Henry's a wolf? And that wolves have now evolved to have fingers
Angel Pham
Oct 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The story Dust City by Robert Paul Weston is a great fantasy fiction story. The story is about the son of a big bad wolf who isn’t so big and bad, Henry Whelp. His father is the real big bad wolf who murdered little red riding hood. Everyone assumes that it’s in Henry’s blood. He keeps it on the low on the outskirts of Dust City. All the ravens, hominids, and foxes are hooked onto something. It’s not just any average dust, it’s fairydust. When the killer at the house forces Henry to to escape, h ...more
Heather Jackson
Oct 24, 2014 rated it really liked it
This book turns fairytales into film noir. Bloody brilliant. It’s set in a gritty fairytale metropolis in a time after all the fairies have left. Without fairies, there’s no magic – no wishes granted, so to speak. And the fairytale creatures that remain (dwarves, giants, wolves, foxes, ravens, elves, goblins and hominids) have to make due with pharmaceutical grade dust – leftover magic mined from the earth that is a poor substitute for real fairy dust. Some of these dust operations are legal (li ...more
Jay G
Dec 21, 2014 rated it really liked it
Want to see more bookish things from me? Check out my YouTube channel:

Henry Whelp is a good wolf, never been in trouble in his life. Until one day he finds himself in juvie after an incident with a rock and a transport truck. His father is also in prison for the murder of Little Red Riding Hood and her Grandma. When he goes to visit his father in prison, he finds out that his dad may have been framed by a dwarf named Skinner who may also be responsible fo
Daphne Moss
Jan 11, 2016 rated it really liked it
First of all I read this book for school but it's still YA so I'm still going to review it here. I heard some bad stuff about this book, but I actually liked it. The story is really interesting and the characters are pretty cool. I just have two things I didn't like. First of all, the characters and were really underdeveloped. I get that these animals evolved from animals we see nowadays but it was still really confusing. I wasn't sure if they were mutants like the wolves in the Lunar Chronicles ...more
Sharon Tyler
Jun 01, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Dust City by Robert Paul Weston is a young adult novel that is both a fractured fairy tale and a work of noir fiction. The story takes place in the world of fairy tale creatures, including animals that have evolved and become anthropomorphized, long after the fairies have disappeared. The action in this story revolves around the big, bad wolf’s son Henry who is living in a juvenile detention center for a reasonably small offense. The big, bad wolf in in prison for killing a girl and her grandmot ...more
Jul 25, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: galleys, reviewed
Eh, I really don't care one way or another. It wasn't a waste of my time, but I don't think Weston is the Next Big Thing in the publishing business, and I've certainly read or watched more creative fairytale knockoffs. Set this one up to the beauty of Shannon Hale's work or the humor of Gail Carson Levine's or the sarcastic fun of Patricia C. Wrede's and it pales in comparison. There were some clever bits, and at times hints of a good command of language, but not enough to really intrigue me. I' ...more
Myles Wolfe
FULL DISCLOSURE: I did not finish this book so my issue with it might be addressed or resolved at the end. The writing was fine. I acknowledge I might not be the target audience for this book so my opinion might not really matter all that much. I found the book quite boring. The characters weren't all that interesting to me. The writing wasn't bad though.

I didn't enjoy the premise of this book. Presenting metaphorical themes of racial inequality and social prejudice in a world inhabited by fairy
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“Jiminy," says the old woman. The mothballs gleam with excitement and she claps her hands. "A wolf!"
"Gram!" Siobhan glares across the room. She turns to me. "You'll have to excuse her. She's real old. Wasn't a lot integrating between the species back in her day."
I pad over and put out a paw. "Pleased to meet you, madam."
She blushes, the varicose veins in her cheeks swelling with blood. Instead of taking my paw to shake, however, she turns it over as if it's a piece of bruised fruit in a market. "Hmmm..." She pores over my palm, nodding like a fortune-teller. Her spectacles slide comically down the bridge of her nose, and when she looks up at me, her face is full of mock astonishment. "Oh, my! What big teeth you have!" She giggles and kicks her slippered feet.
The old elf claps her tiny hands. "I always wanted to say that!”
“It appeared painful to regrow a set of hands, but I can hardly blame her for dabbling in street magic. Anyone can see she's addicted to being whole.” 5 likes
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