Saturday, September 15, 2012

Book Review: Dust

Dust
(Of Dust and Darkness #1)
Published By:  Devon Ashley
Publication Date:  September 18, 2012
Page Count: 150
But it at:  Amazon
Source:  ARC Kindly Provided by Author
  Audience:  Young Adult - Fantasy 

Anyone who knows my taste in books knows I love reading about the fey...and I usually love each author's unique take based on this magical world.  I've always been intrigued by the fey's capriciousness, their passion, their otherworldliness, their hierarchies, and I even have a bit of a fascination with their cruelty.  Dust by Devon Ashley encompasses all these things in an interesting way and packages it up in a grim little tale that had me totally sucked in.

However, I will confess that I was quite worried at the beginning...and must have let out an audible groan when I began the first chapter where we're introduced to Rosalie and her Hollow...a small population made up entirely of PIXIES...as in the 6", and sometimes mischievous, variety!  I already knew the story was about a pixie and pixie dust but I have to confess that I wasn't thinking Tinkerbell size little faeries...but here they were.  But I also know from experience that you have to give a book more time than just the first chapter before drawing conclusions so I sat back and patiently carried on.  Before too long, I forgot Rosalie's diminutive size and the small world around her and was totally pulled in to the story and her plight...and Rosalie and her fellow pixies became life-size with their monumental struggles.

And I have to give kudos to the author for pulling me in and getting me past the initial wariness I had with a story about little pixies, too.  Her world building and character development was wonderfully  entwined in the story.  We first learn about Rosalie through her simple, care-free life in the Hollow before her little world comes crashing down around her when she's stolen by the more powerful fae, and kept isolated and starved before she is forced into a pixie slave-labour camp.  To the powerful fae, pixies are at the bottom of the totempole.  Above them are the spriggans who are considered the enforcers for the fae and then the true faeries themselves are at the top of the food chain where they have been capturing pixies for years, using them till there is nothing left but a hollow husk, to manufacture pixie dust used to create their illusions.

This is so NOT a Tinkerbell tale...as this story is dark and illustrates the cruelty faeries are often capable of.  And they can be very cruel! 

As I mentioned, we follow the story through Rosalie.  To say that this little pixie is small and sweet would be a terrible injustice!  Sure, she started off that way -- initially, she didn't have a care in the world except the peer pressure she felt from her best friend to start 'courting'.  Rosalie is a bit of a loner and appreciates nature more than anyone in her Hollow.  But when she is stolen away into the cruel life forced upon her, she literally becomes larger than life.  I can't under-emphasize the lengths of cruelty the fae put upon her with the intention of breaking her spirit...and at many times, they nearly succeeded but she found the strength deep within herself and became all the stronger for it.  She managed to keep her insecurities hidden when required and kept her snarky personality at the forefront, which sometimes got the better of her and subjected her to even more tortures.  But her strength was so admirable that there was no way that I could not root for Rosalie!

During one of Rosalie's bouts of imprisonment, she finds an unlikely ally in Jack, a faerie who is sent to guard her as his own punishment for playing one too many pranks.  There is an obvious and expected contentiousness between them at first, but through the horrors of Rosalie's captivity at the hands of Finley and his brute spriggans, a friendship blossoms, which eventually becomes something much more and I was a total sap for it. 

I adored Jack!  He showed another side of the fae that gave us hope that not ALL of them are capable of such evilness.  The things he did for Rosalie, often humiliating at times for her, just made me appreciate him all the more.  And as their relationship grew...so did the realization that their being together was absolutely forbidden.  But Jack was unselfishly bound and determined to free Rosalie from her imprisonment. 

If I had one complaint, it would be that this story suffered from a little TMI (too much information) at times.  While I'll admit that I sometimes have wondered in other stories what the characters do when 'nature calls' while being kept in a crude prison, this story didn't leave anything to the imagination.  However, I believe that the author intended it to be that way because it resulted in me feeling so bad for Rosalie having to suffer the humiliation of such issues in front of Jack...and he definitely saw her at her worst. 

The ending does wrap up on a bit of a cliffhanger, and left me wanting more...so you can bet that I'm on board for the sequel!!

Finally, I'd like to thank the author for the opportunity to read and review this book prior to it's release.


Summary: 

4. The number of times my delicate wings have been broken and clamped behind my back.
68. The number inked upon my skin, marking me the sixty-eighth pixie to be stolen.
87. The number of days I’ve been wrongfully imprisoned.
88. The first day the faeries will regret stealing me.

Healthy. Cheery. Vivacious. All traits Rosalie has before becoming enslaved by the faeries to make an endless supply of pixie dust. Now that Rosalie has been traumatized by slave labor, extreme desolate conditions and multiple deaths, this hardened pixie is anything but. When this rebellious teenager attempts an escape, she’s isolated in cramped quarters until she learns her place. Just as she begins to let go of all that hope, she finds an unlikely friend in Jack, the faerie assigned to guard her. Interspecies dating is forbidden in the fae world, so their growing attraction is unacceptable. And even if Jack can find a way to free her, they know the prison is the only place they can truly be together.


17 comments:

  1. Good review! There aren't a lot of books about pixies, though there are plenty on the fae. This story seems quite unique to me even though I've only read the synopsis!

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    1. Thank you Allyson! That is exactly why I really liked this story...it is very unique! I hope you give it a go and let us know what you think!! And thanks for stopping by the nest! :)

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  2. Wow, what an awesome review! The only fae series I've read is Wings, which did 't have a a hierarchy of fae in the same way as Dust. I would love to know more about the differences between pixies, spriggins fae. I love the idea that two fae that can't be together fall for each other and defy their society. Your review gave me a wonderful summary of the story, and let me know that I am going to love this book!

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    1. Thank you Lindy! I hope you enjoy it as much as I did! Thanks for stopping by and I hope you entered the giveaway!

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  3. Well... I thought this was going to be exactly as a Tinkerbell story. I'm glad it isn't. And, since I've only read the sinopsis, I can admit that this sounds pretty interesting. Perhaps not like anything I've read before ;-)

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    1. I hope you give it a try and let us know what you think, Leonor! Check out the giveaway if you haven't caught it yet!

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  4. I've never read a book with pixies. (At least not since I was a child.) I love this. I am dying to know more about the TMI you noted.

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  5. Great review!! I can't wait to read this book! I have added this to my ever growing list :)

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  6. A book about pixies! How cute. Haha. I've never read something like this. I'm unsually into vampires and angels and the link. But this book sounds good so I'd like to try it. ;)

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  7. Mmm...it seems this books doesn't meet the stereotypical ideas about pixies! Now, I'm even more intrigued. It would make sense that fae have some cruelty in them. It makes for a much more interesting story. This idea of slavery, though...I know it's going to be quite a read. A dark one based on your review. Thanks for sharing. :D

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    1. Thanks Zara! It's really DIFFERENT! I hope you give it a try! And if you do...let me know what you think! Hope you had a nice summer!

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  8. Thanks everyone! I hope you all give it a try! It was really good!!

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  9. This is one book that is deffinately on my to be read list! I love how different this book seems & how i cannot think of any other book similar to it. Great review! :)

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  10. I liked it how you mentioned the good parts and the delicate way you told us what you didn't liked.

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  11. Great review, Jack sounds greaat and this book sounds amazing. I haven't read too many books that feature fairies and I can't wait to get started on this!

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  12. Really informative review. I'm curious as to what the book will hold. I just hope Rosalie isn't too Bella Swanish.

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  13. I am SOOO glad that this book is getting noticed! I really hope you all check it out because it's a really enjoyable read! Don't forget to come back and let us know what you think too!

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