Book Review by Liss Caldwell
A Town Called Dust is the first in the YA (young adult) DUST trilogy series.
I was drawn in from the prologue. It is no longer the rabbit proof fence that divides Australia. The fence in A Town Called Dust separates the last surviving human populations from the ghouls. The human settlements are located in central Australia, the most inhabitable place I can imagine, where monthly baths are a luxury, dirt farming a necessity and girls graduate at sixteen to the sisterhood and boys to the Diggers. The Diggers maintain the fence and are the last line of defense if the fence falls. The fence is has fallen.
This is a coming of age story, unfolding for Squid and Lynn in a new world after, the reckoning, set in the towns of Dust and Alice. The story is simply told and unites the characters with a twist that ultimately drives you to hunger for the next book in the series. As the characters themselves grow, and you think you know them and their story, another dimension is revealed that propels the story forward. The reading pace and rhythm escalates and is well mirrored with the character arcs, constantly pulling the reader into the world of DUST and forward through the chapters.
The new world is built with strong characters fueled with diverse backstories and their own missions. Each has their own path to navigate the restrictions imposed by gender, politics, power and ultimately survival. Timeless themes unravel through a new apocalyptic Australian landscape with ancient features, that link the reader through familiarity with these remnants.
I listened to the odyssey unfold on audio book over two sessions, only stopping due to adult commitments. I really didn’t want to adult and would have continued in one session if I could of. I doubt young teens would stop themselves from listening to, or reading the novel in one session.
There’s one thing I know for sure, and that is that I need to have the lingering questions answered. I am hooked on this series. It would be a great TV series. Apocalyptic Australia, zombies, adventure, mystery, deceit and secrets unraveling around strong male and female characters. It’s all here.
A Town Called Smoke is the next novel in the series and then A World of Ash.