Of Metal and Wishes by Sarah Fine (Of Metal and Wishes #1)
Genre: Retelling, Steampunk, Romance, Horror
Page Count: 317
Book #1 of the Of Metal and Wishes series
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Published: August 5, 2014
There are whispers of a ghost in the slaughterhouse where sixteen-year-old Wen assists her father in his medical clinic—a ghost who grants wishes to those who need them most. When one of the Noor, men hired as cheap factory labor, humiliates Wen, she makes an impulsive wish of her own, and the Ghost grants it. Brutally.Guilt-ridden, Wen befriends the Noor, including their outspoken leader, a young man named Melik. At the same time, she is lured by the mystery of the Ghost and learns he has been watching her... for a very long time.
As deadly accidents fuel tensions within the factory, Wen must confront her growing feelings for Melik, who is enraged at the sadistic factory bosses and the prejudice faced by his people at the hand of Wen’s, and her need to appease the Ghost, who is determined to protect her against any threat—real or imagined. She must decide whom she can trust, because as her heart is torn, the factory is exploding around her... and she might go down with it.
1. When I first saw this book, I was immediately drawn to its cover. I thought it looked very mysterious and if you know anything about me, I love a good mystery! Once I heard, however, that it was in fact a retelling of The Phantom Of The Opera I pretty much went straight to Amazon and ordered a copy as fast as my little fingers could fill out the info. I haven't read the classic but I have a friend (follow on her Instagram) who loves anything and everything Phantom related so she might have rubbed off a little Phantom love on me. I enjoyed this book enough to satisfy me so here's my review:
2. Characters: I thought the characters in this book were interesting enough to get me invested in the story. I didn't like the fact that I didn't get really any background on them since they don't talk about themselves AT ALL but I did like what I got. Wen is a very smart girl living in a not-so-safe environment after her mother passes away and she and her father are forced to live in the slaughterhouse they work in. She's very skilled at what she does which is helping her father treat patients who get injured in the factory. She is a bit naive though which got a little annoying but at the same time, I wanted to know what happened to Wen as the story continues. The mysterious 'Ghost' is yet another interesting one to follow. I'm not going to tell you who or what the 'Ghost' is but I will tell you that the story of this mysterious being is a bit of a sad, lonely one which peeked my interest a little more. The other characters such as Melik, Jima, Sinan and Wen's father as well as other side characters were all fun to follow, though again, there was little background to any of them.
3. World: Going into this book, I didn't actually know that it was going to have a bit of a steampunk feel to it which I loved. Obviously because it's steampunk, it had clockwork, cool inventions and the story plays out in a factory. I thought it gave the book a bit more of a 'gothic' feel to it which I would say makes for a great Halloween read or just something to pick up on a rainy day. The descriptions of things were great and you could really visualize what things looked like such as the factory itself, the town Wen visits and even the injuries which plague some of the patients which can get really grotesque so if you have a weak stomach, watch out. The writing wasn't anything to write home about BUT it was still a beautifully told story and was what I was in the mood for.
4. Storyline: The story plays out beautifully and at first, I wasn't sure how it was going to go. I only know the basics of the original Phantom Of The Opera story based off the Broadway production I watched a few months ago so I didn't exactly know how this retelling was going to unfold but I was delightfully satisfied in the end. It was a bit predictable and some revelations I wasn't surprised by since I suspected it pretty early on but it was still fun to read. I like that even though this retelling sticks pretty close to the original story, the author put her own little twist to it which made it a bit more modern in a sense and a little more interesting to those who might not the story by Andrew Lloyd Webber. Overall, I liked this one.
1. Wen: Even though I liked this book, I did have some problems I personally had with it. I didn't like that Wen was described as being a smart and pretty girl and yet being portrayed as more of a 'victim' to the men who work in the factory. Almost every single guy she made contact with either wanted to touch her in some way or victimize her which honestly got a little annoying and gross. I didn't like that that aspect was used to make the reader sympathize with Wen and even with the workers. Just no.
2. Romance: I usually don't have that big of a problem when it comes to romance in a book but this time however, I just didn't really like it in the end. The romance was slow-burning and sweet which I liked at first but then turned more desperate if you will. I get that this book has a love triangle the involves another character loving Wen from afar but I didn't like how this character turned from admirer to all-out obsessed with her. Stalker! It just made me a little uncomfortable and a little weirded out. Is weirded even a word? Anyway, the romance was just a little too sappy for my taste.
Overall, I enjoyed this book enough to want to continue on with its sequel which was released back in August. I'm excited to see where the story goes though it might be a little while before I decide to continue with the story. Would I recommend this book? I would say to honestly read it for yourself. This is definitely a book that really depends on the reader.
I hope you guys enjoyed this book review! If you have any other book requests you would like me to review, just leave a comment or send me an email. Read on bookworms! See you in the next chapter!