Wonders of Dust

Wonders of Dust


Wonders of Dust

I can just picture the publisher pitch  meeting: “What we really need is a book about dust!” It just seems like a random topic that you wouldn’t need (or care) to read a book about. Sort of like this book about wax.

It’s not actually a bad book, though it is horribly old and outdated. It talks about asbestos, dust on the surface of the moon, different kinds of dust particles, the Dust Bowl, dust clouds that hang over cities…all kinds of fascinating details about dust. It is a juvenile book written with very adult terminology and in a very dry style, so all those interesting ideas are really lost in it’s boring cover and format. A kid might actually be interested in dust if the book came in a more exciting package.


Wonders of Dust contents




  1. The book about dust is actually as dry as dust! The call number label indicates that it’s been languishing in the stacks of an academic library. I hope that copies purchased by school and public libraries have, well, bitten the dust.

    1. I think it’s a pretty creative topic — though I am not a fan of dust (however, it seems to be a fan of me — it wants to coat all the surfaces in my house). I wonder if the book covers household dust?

  2. Darn, authors, you missed a chance to go with The Romance of Dust. But reading between the lines of the sample page, at least this book was not sponsored by industry.

    1. Taking a lighter, cheekier tone made this book a fun read — as well as a godsend to any poor kid assigned a book report on dust (presumably as punishment).

  3. I’m kinda disappointed that I can’t find a copy of this to buy online.

    Honest question: has anyone ever proposed having an annual “Awful Weed Sale” fundraiser/auction? I have no shame in admitting that I’ve bought more than one title after it came up on this site, but always felt a little bad that none of that money went towards the libraries that brought them to my attention. It’d be fun/amusing to have an auction of truly awful library books, with the proceeds going towards the libraries that provided them.

    1. Hurry – there is an ex-library copy on abebooks.com for only $10.00 as of this comment! Don’t wait. 😀

      1. Oh man, I didn’t think to put the name in quotes earlier! Thanks for the heads-up! (Yes, really. I also got around to buying “Lasers Work Like This” after figuring out my password over there…)

  4. Actually dust can pretty interesting, even everyday household dust. When I was younger I used to read Owl Magazine, a science mag for preteens, and they had these cartoon kids called The Mighty Mites, who could shrink to various sizes and grow big again. In one comic they shrank and explored a clump of dust and encountered a dust mite that was the size of an elephant. When they were big again one of them picked up the vacuum cleaner to use but one of the others told him the vacuum cleaner must be full of “dust monsters”. It really freaked him out, lol.

  5. There is a Museum of Dirt in Boston MA, which would find this book useful. If anything exists or can be conceived of, then you can write about it. And we’re all going to turn into dust eventually, so rather an interesting subject.

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