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Vanity in Dust is a captivating dystopian fantasy

Vanity in Dust

By Cheryl Low

World Weaver Press

General Fiction (Adult), Sci Fi & Fantasy

Pub Date 08 Aug 2017


Vanity in Dust is one of the most captivating fantasies that I’ve read in recent months. With its strange politics and Asian feel, it is very different than most dystopian reads. The setting is gorgeous, at once decadent and desolate. Magic is at once ever present and tightly reined in.

The Realm is ruled by the Queen, rarely seen but immensely powerful. The area surrounding her tower is divided, controlled by three families who regularly war amongst themselves. Dust, a magical drug, distracts and dulls the senses, giving the ruling families immortality. All Dust is produced and sold by the Queen - it is a jealously guarded monopoly. Vaun is a prince of the realm, able to go anywhere, sleep with anyone and do anything. His life of leisure begins to crack when bad dust begins to be seen throughout the realm and he is poisoned by it. Once free of the Dust’s grasp he begins to see that perhaps this life is not what he thought it was.

Vanity in Dust’s characters are intriguing, vibrantly painted and very alive. The complex political machinations will appeal to fans of Game of Thrones, as well to fans of dystopian fantasy. I enjoyed Vanity in Dust immensely and I can’t wait to see what comes next.

5 / 5

I received a copy of Vanity in Dust from the publisher and in exchange for an honest review.



In the Realm there are whispers. Whispers that the city used to be a different place. That before the Queen ruled there was a sky beyond the clouds and a world beyond their streets.

Vaun Dray Fen never knew that world. Born a prince without a purpose in a Realm ruled by lavish indulgence, unrelenting greed, and vicious hierarchy, he never knew a time before the Queen’s dust drugged the city. Everything is poisoned to distract and dull the senses, even the tea and pastries. And yet, after more than a century, his own magic is beginning to wake. The beautiful veneer of the Realm is cracking. Those who would defy the Queen turn their eyes to Vaun, and the dust saturating the Realm.

From the carnivorous pixies in the shadows to the wolves in the streets, Vaun thought he knew all the dangers of his city. But when whispers of treason bring down the fury of the Queen, he'll have to race to save the lives and souls of those he loves.

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