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City Of Dust: A Philip Krome Story [Paperback]

Steve Niles
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
RRP: 14.99
Price: 11.81 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

7 July 2009
From the dark mind of legendary horror writer Steve Niles (30 Days of Night) comes a story set in the aftermath of our world's collapse. Records show the Earth once known was consumed by religious wars, spurred by the suppression of free thought and where creative expression is now viewed as the rot and infestation of the mind. This chilling vision of the future unveils a world where the police now patrol for crimes of the imagination, or Mind Crimes as their called. This beliefs, along with any tales of false heroes, idols or gods, are illegal. Special detective Philip Khrome doesn't enforce Imagination, instead he works in homicide; thats where the action is, and he has seen it all before. But criminals evolve and the world is forever changing. When a killing spree hits his department, Khrome finds himself face-to-face with a perpetrator who has merged reality with superstition, something is not what it seems. This enemy of folklore will require old-fashioned detective techniques to bring to justice, but the only problem is it will take one's imagination to find the source of this new evil.

Product details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Radical Publishing (7 July 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0980233550
  • ISBN-13: 978-0980233551
  • Product Dimensions: 25.7 x 16.8 x 1.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,074,349 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars city of dust.a philip krome story 14 April 2013
From the very first page to last panel this book had me wanting more.
Crisp story telling,beautfully eerie artwork.
This is one of my top ten comics a must read for every comic book fan.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars philip Krome 4 July 2009
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
30 Days Of Night This is great, I only hope it is the start of an on going series.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3.8 out of 5 stars  4 reviews
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 1984 Meets Blade Runner 13 July 2009
By Jon Repesh - Published on
I've stated this before in other reviews, but Steve Niles is an exasperating writer to follow. The quality of his stories can be maddeningly inconsistent, even to the point of possible apathy towards future projects, but one thing quite evident is that his creator owned work is decidedly his strongest efforts. While editorial interference may be a factor, it still comes down to the writing. With City of Dust we have a futuristic cop/horror tale that borrows heavily from 1984 and Blade Runner, focusing on a time when books, music, and even the expression of basic thoughts and ideals are banned, an admittedly unoriginal but still potentially intriguing concept. Gruesome murders take place which leads to the discovery of an innocent object, a children's book, but which ominously sets dire events into motion. In time these events trigger doubts within our resolute protagonist concerning the state's political philosophies, ones that he has willingly supported from early childhood, plus possible recriminations concerning one dastardly deed committed because of those beliefs. The crime and mystery elements work fine, however Niles' trademark horror in this instance appears forced and not overly critical to the narrative. In a back of the book interview, he states his interest in eventually writing a straight up crime story. Despite its futuristic setting, this trade would have been an ideal place to start.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Why introducing vile creatures of the night to counter an oppressive government is not a genius move... 17 July 2012
By H. Bala - Published on
I get nervous and super-paranoid whenever I come across an independent comic book company that churns out the good stuff. I start crossing my fingers and hoping like heck that it survives and flourishes and maintains its quality output. But crossing fingers never did Comico any good, or CrossGen or First or Eclipse or Jim Shooter's Defiant. Radical Comics is the new kid on the block, and I'm already hooked on several of its titles. CITY OF DUST, it's pretty good.

If you're a comic book buff, you already know writer Steve Niles. He's the cat who established himself as a presence in the horror scene with the 30 DAYS OF NIGHT and Cal McDonald series. So he's back in his wheelhouse with CITY OF DUST, mostly. There are strong elements of horror in this graphic novel, but also of sci-fi, a field into which Niles traipses for the first time. The premise allows for a freewheeling genre mash-up, as we soak in bits of horror and cyberpunk and crime noir. What's immediately noted are the broodiness and the claustrophobia, as marvelously evoked by the dark and striking artwork. It's a trio of slick artists providing these visuals.

Early on is a gorgeous two-paged spread in which our eyes travel the expanse of a looming metropolis, and this may be one of the few times in which this series lends itself to wide, open space. In this towering, vertical city, in the year 2166, imagination has been outlawed. No reading (books are banned), no praying, no telling stories by the campfire, because those acts promote controversy and dissension and war. Up in the city heights reside the priveleged and the well-off, all of whom afford their own private security. Down below, in the lower reaches, on the grimy streets, the police are on constant prowl for crimes of thought and imagination.

What happens then when nightmarish monsters step out of myth and into this rigid, sanitized world?

When Philip Khrome was a child he turned in his dad for telling him a bedtime story. Khrome, raised by the system, today is a cop. And he'd never had call to second-guess that system. But then he stumbles on a strange serial killer who rends his victims to gory bits and yet doesn't leave a trace of DNA. And then, underneath one mutilated corpse, Khrome finds an incongruous children's book. Baffled, our once compliant cop is compelled to question everything he's ever believed. Wait, hold up, so censorship isn't a boon?

Mostly, I love dystopian settings. CITY OF DUST offers a pretty chilling vision of our near future, a place which has no room for literature or religion and Aesop's Fables and the Bible are equally condemned. Thing is, there's a germ of plausibility in the premise. Regarding our literary liberties, as Niles remarks in his Newsarama interview (included in this trade), "I think we're already in danger of people not reading." Niles goes on to note that in his correspondence with fans he's observed that many of them are steeped in the text messaging culture, in which acronyms abound and punctuations ignored, and there's an insidious undercutting of proper language. To extrapolate wildly then, how many steps from there until the written word is done away with altogether?

Several things to praise and frown at. There's a welcome feel of BLADE RUNNER crossed with FAHRENHEIT 451. I like that when the prescribed method of investigating - applying crime scene robots - fails to turn up any clue, Khrome is forced to resort to good, old-fashioned police work.

On the downside, I wasn't too keen on the dearth of memorable character beats. I felt that the ending came off rushed. I had to re-read that section because I thought I'd skipped something.

I really like the slick artwork. Radical Comics, much like CrossGen before it, seems to specialize in drawing in huge artistic talents. I will mention that Zid, who draws the first issue, has an awesome grasp of backdrop and background details. But he's sort of wobbly when it comes to facial expressions, and there were times when I had to work to be able to sort out which character is which. The other artists - Garrie Gastonny and Brandon Chng - are terrific, even though I feel they're not quite on the same level as Steve Pugh (Hotwire: Requiem For The Dead), Leonardo Manco (Driver for the Dead), Wayne Nichols (RYDER ON THE STORM), and Roy Martinez (FVZA: Federal Vampire And Zombie Agency).

CITY OF DUST is a fun read. Niles constructs an engrossing world, even if I wouldn't want to live there. And to reiterate, it's a nice blend of horror and sci-fi and crime noir. So if you've got a yen for futuristic jet packs and vampires, spidery CSI 'bots and werewolves, then you've got to get a taste.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good but not Great Horror Comic 27 May 2010
By Enrique Trevino - Published on
I was introduced to Steve Niles by his series Simon Dark. A series which I enjoyed a lot, at least the first 12 issues (the last 6 weren't as good). I decided to read this book because I liked Simon Dark and because I like the publisher. Radical Comics is a new publishing house (well, almost 2 years old now) and they put a lot of effort in putting out quality books for affordable prices. I haven't liked one of their books (Freedom Formula), but I have liked the other two I've read (Shrapnel and City of Dust).

This comic is a futuristic tale. It follows a cop, Phillipe Krome, whose job is to burn books, it reminds me of Fahrenheit 451. However, in this book, we have some monsters attacking people. It becomes a sort of detective story mixed with horror in a future world. I think the story does a good job and it is helped by the astonishing visuals of Zid. However, I think the last chapter in the story was weak. I think there was more potential in this book.

A good but not great book.
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Worth Reading 3 July 2010
By T. D. Burns - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Really not a bad graphic novel. Granted its nothing really original. Its basicly the " I Robot " story plot item for plot item lifted and given a little bit of a twist.
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