Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Blog Tour: Of Dreams and Rust by Sarah Fine
Review + Giveaway

Find the full tour schedule below

Of Dreams and Rust
by Sarah Fine
Read: August 7 - 11, 2015
Published: August 4, 2015 by Margaret K. McElderry Books
Source: Copy from the the publisher (Thank you, S&S!)
Category: YA, Fantasy, Retelling, Duet

Series: Of Metal and Wishes book two (Review)

Book description: War erupts in this bittersweet sequel to Of Metal and Wishes, inspired by The Phantom of the Opera and called “relentlessly engrossing” by The Romantic Times.

In the year since the collapse of the slaughterhouse where Wen worked as her father’s medical assistant, she’s held all her secrets close. She works in the clinic at the weapons factory and sneaks away to nurse Bo, once the Ghost, now a boy determined to transform himself into a living machine. Their strange, fragile friendship soothes some of the ache of missing Melik, the strong-willed Noor who walked away from Wen all those months ago—but it can’t quell her fears for him.

The Noor are waging a rebellion in the west. When she overhears plans to crush Melik’s people with the powerful war machines created at the factory, Wen makes the painful decision to leave behind all she has known—including Bo—to warn them. But the farther she journeys into the warzone, the more confusing things become. A year of brutality seems to have changed Melik, and Wen has a decision to make about him and his people: How much is she willing to sacrifice to save them from complete annihilation?

Story Breakdown -

Of Dreams and Rust is the sequel to Of Metal and Wishes and the conclusion to the duet. Book two begins twelve months after the end of the first, and Wen is now assisting in the clinic of the weapons factory in Gochan One. She is also secretly visiting and caring for Bo, the former Ghost of Gochan two, who hides underground behind his metal creations and wishes he could turn into a machine himself. When Wen hears about a plot to crush the Noor's rebellion with the very war machines made in her factory, she leaves everything behind to find and warn Melik. But the boy she fell for and fought to save the previous year has been hardened by war, and Wen struggles with her decision to betray her people to save his. 

What I love - 

Like Of Metal and Wishes, Of Dreams and Rust is gorgeously written, achy and atmospheric, blending light and dark: the unforgiving sharpness of metal parts and the vibrance of Noor fabrics and culture. Although we learned about the Noor people from Melik in the previous book, now Wen is able to visit their lands and see their customs firsthand. Melik's Noor are very different from Wen's Itanyai, including being much more open and expressive. I loved reading about the differences between them, and Wen's attempts to fit in and understand. 

However, the contrasts between these peoples have created many difficulties. The major one being war, and Wen is very much caught in between that. She has a healer's heart, wanting to protect and save as much as she can, but war means drawn lines, casualties and brutality on both sides. I appreciated that author Sarah Fine allowed Wen to see the darkness of war, and understand that neither side has perfectly clean hands. Wen wages an inner battle to know what to do when many of her ideals are destroyed, but her strength is shown in how she is able to reconcile these things within herself and make her own decisions about what she believes is right. Wen will never be a traditional fighter, but there is great power in her bravery and willingness to jump in and help the wounded at personal risk. I admired that so much. 

In addition to Wen, I continue to adore Melik, and I treasured getting a glimpse of where he came from and the things that have made him who he is. Melik has a much more traditional strength and leadership abilities, but I relished the moments of vulnerability he showed us, and the fact that he wasn't afraid of that side of himself. Bo is an interesting contrast to Melik, because he is determined to hide his soft spots behind a metal shell even at great personal pain. But in many ways he felt the most human to me in this story, and I connected to him for that. 

What I Wish - 

I wish I hadn't been in so much turmoil over the romance in the second half of this book. The first half of this story was a full five star for me. The intensity was high and I was incredibly proud and emotionally connected to Wen as she leaves her people and the factory and travels to somewhere unknown to warn the Noor. Then she has to adapt when nothing turns out as she expected. The romance was also lovely and painful, and there was so much delicious swoon! But then something happens just past midway - (spoiler) Bo shows up again (end spoiler) - and the third quarter of this book was focused on relationship drama that dragged me down a lot. I ended up frustrated with Wen and lost some of my emotional connection to her in the wake of her inability to be clear or decisive. However, when the action kicked up again in the final quarter, the focus shifted and Wen was more open about her decisions. Thankfully at that point the story turned around again for me. 

In Conclusion - 

Of Dreams and Rust is a solid follow up to Of Metal and Wishes, and in many ways a much stronger story for me. I love books about characters who come together though they are on opposite sides of a great chasm, and Wen's journey to help Melik and his Noor is intense and harrowing - not to mention romantic. I did have a few issues with how the Wen-Melik-Bo situation was handled in the third quarter, but it eventually worked itself out to my satisfaction. The end of this duet is heartbreaking in places but also very hopeful, and I'm glad I had the chance to meet these characters and live in their world for a little while.

Cliffhanger Scale: End of the duet
Love Triangle Factor: Mild. I'm hiding the rest of my thoughts on this below:


About the Author

Sarah Fine is the author of several books for teens, including Of Metal and Wishes and its sequel, Of Dreams and Rust, and the Guards of the Shadowlands YA urban fantasy series. She is also the co-author (with Walter Jury) of two YA sci-fi thrillers: Scan and its sequel Burn. Sarah is also the author of the adult urban fantasy series, Servants of Fate, with the third book in the series, Fated, releasing September 2015. When Sarah’s not writing, she’s psychologizing. Sometimes she does both at the same time. The results are unpredictable.

Find Sarah: Website | Tumblr | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Pinterest


Tour Schedule



Two winners will win the set of books in this duet: 
Of Metal and Wishes & Of Dreams and Rust
(Aren't those covers just gorgeous together? I know you want them!)

If the rafflecopter code isn't showing up, click HERE for the giveaway. 


  1. I ADORED Of Metal and Wishes and am so excited for the sequel so I am glad to hear you thought it was a strong finale! I hate that there was romantic drama in the third quarter though. I am slightly more tolerant and have had complete faith in Sarah that she wouldn't actually make it into something fully fledged but I completely understand your need for characters to verbalize feelings. I know I sometimes get antsy when that isn't done. It's not so much that I don't trust the character, I just tend to be paranoid and want to be reassured.....

    I AM glad though that this was still a good book.

    Fantastic review, Lauren!! :)

    Rashika @ The Social Potato

  2. Uuuugh, I will not read these books after all :( What you say about the romance in this one.. yeah. It would bother me a lot, sadly. Like it bothered you. Sigh. I'm so sorry that it was that way sweetie :\ But I'm glad you liked the other parts of this book :D Gorgeous review Lauren. <3 Thank you for sharing your thoughts about it :)

  3. I have loved Sarah's first series, so was really excited about giving this series a go too, I just don't know why I haven't got around to reading it yet. I'm glad that you did enjoy this one overall though despite having some issues. Lovely review Lauren :)

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  5. Thank for your review, Lauren! This duet sounds so lovely, I really want to read it, but that one section really terrifies me. I'm with you - I *need* to have the characters clarify their love, and the fact that Wen doesn't do it all will totally bother me. :/ I'll definitely sit on this one for a while.

  6. I'm so torn about picking this one up, now! I really despise romantic angst the most out of all the bad qualities a love triangle inspires, so I think I'd definitely struggle through sections of this book. I also didn't absolutely love OF METAL AND WISHES the way a lot of other readers did, though I did enjoy it, so I'm conflicted whether or not this is going to be for me. Thanks for such an honest review, though, Lauren--I'll definitely be going into this prepared for a love triangle now, which I wouldn't have known from a lot of other reviews.

  7. I love these covers and would read these based on the covers alone. I remember that I wanted to read the first book quite a bit after it came out and I like that this is a duet. I'm finding that those are fun lately. I didn't read the romance spoilers so IDK anything about that! Still planning to read them! Great review. These books are so pretty.

  8. I actually loved this one better than the first for some reason. I was just on the edge of my seat with such high stakes. And I don't disagree with you when it comes to your issues with the romance, but it didn't bother me that much because it was so clear how Wen felt (at least to me, although definitely poor Melik!) Such an incredible duology, I loved it. Sarah Fine…auto-buy!! ~Pam


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