Review of Of Dreams and Rust by Sarah Fine

OfDreamsandRustOf Dreams and Rust
By: Sarah Fine
Release Date: August 4th 2015
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Format: Print ARC
Source: Publisher

This book was given to me in consideration for an honest review.

My Rating:
star

Summary:
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?

My Thoughts:
I really enjoyed Of Metal and Wishes and knew that I’d love this sequel and conclusion. Of Dreams and Rust did not disappoint and I enjoyed it possibly more than the first book.

I felt that the first book had a slower pace than this one because in this installment we venture out of the slaughterhouse. Beyond that Fine has written a few epic battle scenes. They were so eloquently written and vivid I could picture them as if I were watching a movie. Fine’s descriptions are always beautifully done and emotive. I love that not only can I picture what she’s describing but I can feel it too.

Once again we follow Wen’s story. Some time has passed since the last book and she’s been separated from Melik for a long time (a year!). Her heart still yearns for him and he’s never far from her thoughts. She still works with her father and sees Bo daily. Seeing her every day life you could feel the absence Melik had in her world.

Wen’s character has always been strong, courageous and a wonderful in depth character. Her compassion for all types of people and courage really stood out to me. And really…her COURAGE. She hears of war brewing and she decides to leave all she knows and travel into a war-torn land with people considered her people’s enemy. Now, in some books you might read something like that and really wonder about the character’s sanity. It could seem less brave and more idiotic but Sarah Fine wrote her character in such a way you’d never think that. You are 100% rooting for Wen and you can understand exactly why she’s doing what she’s doing.

The romance in this book was swoon-worthy as you would expect but I appreciated that it was in no way easy. There are miscommunications, misunderstanding and everything you’d expect after being separated from someone so long. And I could have used more pages of Wen and Melik interacting.

Bo was less prominent in this novel but the scenes he was in- wow. He really made an impact but I’ll not go into details since I’ll let you experience it on your own. I did find myself not connecting to him as well as I did in the first novel though he was still an intriguing character.

Final Thoughts:
Of Dreams and Rust was beautifully executed, fast paced, epic, and highly emotional. I adored the writing and characters and can’t wait to read Sarah Fine’s next book.

Extras:

  • Review for Of Metal and Wishes
  • Blog Tour for Of Dreams and Rust– Guest Post from Sarah Fine

Review of Daughter of Dusk by Livia Blackburne

DaughterofDuskDaughter of Dusk
By: Livia Blackburne
Release Date: August 4th 2015
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Format: Print ARC
Source: Kelly from Effortlessly Reading

My Rating:
star

Summary:
After learning the truth about her bloodlines, Kyra can’t help but feel like a monster.

Though she’s formed a tentative alliance with the Palace, Kyra must keep her identity a secret or risk being hunted like the rest of her Demon Rider kin. Tristam and the imprisoned assassin James are among the few who know about her heritage, but when Tristam reveals a heartbreaking secret of his own, Kyra’s not sure she can trust him. And with James’s fate in the hands of the palace, Kyra fears that he will give her away to save himself.

As tensions rise within Forge’s Council, and vicious Demon Rider attacks continue in surrounding villages, Kyra knows she must do something to save her city. But she walks a dangerous line between opposing armies: will she be able to use her link to the Demon Riders for good, or will her Makvani blood prove to be deadly?

My Thoughts:
I really enjoyed Midnight Thief so was very eager to see what would happen in Daughter of Dusk. I chose not to reread the first book so it did take me some time to remember the characters and exactly where the last story left off. After a few chapters though I was back into the Kyra’s story.

I felt that the pacing was a bit slower in this novel though I did enjoy what I was reading. It felt like it took a little long for the action to kick in. Kyra still struggled in this novel to come to terms with her dual nature and I found her difficulty in accepting herself to be one of the more interesting parts in the book. I also loved that we got to see more about what happened to Kyra’s parents. I also like that we see Tristam work on accepting Kyra and working to forgive/acknowledge her Makvani side.

I was a tad irritated that a good amount of the relationship side focused on the two with-holding information and not speaking plainly to one another. I know this happens in life but it is so frustrating to read about for me. I wanted to knock each of them on their heads and get them to speak. Perhaps because of this friction between the two characters I felt little to no chemistry between them. I remember liking them as a couple in the prior novel. I will say there was no love triangle if that was something you worried about.

In the first book and the prequel we got to know James fairly well. He wasn’t nearly as present in this book and I must say I missed him. He was one of my favorite characters because I loved that he was such a grey character.

We are given the opportunity to get a better feel for the Makvani and get more detail about their society. The same characters are present through this novel though we do get introduced to a few new people. Sadly, I didn’t make any sort of emotional connection to any of the side characters.

When we aren’t with the Makvani the story focused on Forge and the political scheming/unrest tearing the city apart. I found this to be moderately interesting but overall it made for a bit of a slower read for me. There’s a lot about Kyra not being of high enough class and to prove it I felt the author would through in some dialect/slang to show her as a street urchin. It never flowed for me and sort of pulled me from the story. I don’t mind class issues in books and this one felt fairly realistic to the characters but it wasn’t something I really loved about the story.

Final Thoughts:
I really looked forward to Daughter of Dusk and overall I found it an entertaining read. I didn’t like it as well as the first book but I was happy to learn more about Kyra and the other characters.

Extras