Monday, October 28, 2013

[Interview: Sarah Fine On Her New Book Of Metal And Wishes]

Guys I'm super excited!  Today I have an interview for you all.  You all know that I'm a HUGE fan of Sarah Fine and her Guards of the Shadowlands series.  And if you don't you can find my review of Sanctum and Fractured by clicking on the titles.  Seriously, if you haven't read them, you're missing out on some of the best books.  When I caught wind of the fact that Sarah was coming out with a book that was loosely based on The Phantom of the Opera, I was in heaven, as more info came out I got more and more excited about the things I was learning.  Of course I still had questions, so I went straight to the source and got us all some answers.  But first, let's take a look at the book, shall we?

Author: Sarah Fine
Release Date: August 5th, 2014
Preorder The Book Here:


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.

So, now that you've read all that good stuff, I'm gonna hand this one over to Sarah herself, so she can tell you even more!

From The Horses Mouth:
An Interview with Sarah Fine

The White Unicorn: So, what made you decide that you wanted to retell the story of Phantom of the Opera?  Was it brought on by the musical or the book?
Sarah Fine: I actually didn't decide to retell the story. I started with the setting, and then began to populate it with characters and a story. There are clearly some obvious parallels and similarities, but it diverges from Phantom in a huge number of ways. I hope people won't expect a retelling as much as a story that bears echoes of Phantom but stands on its own as a unique tale.
The White Unicorn: A meat packing plant?  Setting the book in one was a brilliant idea.  How fun was it to research those?
Sarah Fine: Like I said, I started with the setting instead of starting with the story and choosing the setting (the same thing happened with Sanctum--setting came first). In Of Metal and Wishes, the factory is a character in and of itself. I got inspired to write Of Metal and Wishes after watching the documentary Food Inc., in which there's some hidden camera footage of workers in a poultry plant. So many of them were undocumented immigrants, working in these awful conditions with little protection of their rights. THAT was what inspired this story--I started to wonder about what it must be like to work in those conditions. It reminded me of The Jungle, by Upton Sinclair, a book that's haunted me since I read it over twenty years ago. There's something powerfully grisly and cruel about the setting, and something powerfully resilient about those who work and survive there. 

And no, it wasn't at all fun to research meat butchering and packaging, but it certainly provided some creative fuel for the story!
The White Unicorn: If I'm correct, it sounds like Of Metal and Wishes is set in the past, but can you clarify that for us?
Sarah Fine: That's a great question! Of Metal and Wishes is set in a fictional society. I made up the culture and the people groups (the Noor and the Itanyai), down to their gestures, clothing, and customs. As a result, there's no exact parallel to a point in history. If I had to offer a general time period, though, I'd say turn of the 20th century, but there's definitely some anachronistic technology in there!

The White Unicorn: Did you enjoy weaving a ghost tale as much as you enjoyed recreating the afterlife in your other books?
Sarah Fine: Of course! This is a very different book than my Guards of the Shadowlands books, but in both, the setting is (I hope) vivid and ominous, and the characters within it have to face some pretty dire circumstances. The factory is massive, mysterious, and deadly, and the Ghost is a worthy denizen of such a place. As Wen's father, the company doctor, says to her at one point: "The Ghost has made this place his personal playground ... I just want to make sure he doesn't decide you're one of his toys."
The White Unicorn: If I were to ask you if you could tell us anything about the ghost in Of Metal and Wishes, could you tell us anything?
Sarah Fine: Sure--the title of the book describes him perfectly. 
The White Unicorn: And lastly is Of Metal and Wishes a standalone, or will we be able to look forward to more?  
Sarah Fine: That is yet to be determined! I'd say there's room for a second book, but this one stands on its own.

Once again, a HUGE thank you goes out to Sarah Fine for stopping by the blog today!  If you wanna catch up with her yourself, be sure to check out the links below!

Sarah's Links:





Giselle said...

Ooh this sounds right up my alley! I'm a sucker for any type of ghost story. The factory sounds super creepy and I like how the whole society with the culture and all is all imagined. It sounds very original and atmospheric! Great interview I hadn't heard of this one before I'm definitely going to be keeping an eye out for it!

GillyB said...

I CANNOT WAIT to read this book! I got it on Edelweiss recently and it just sounds AMAZING. Gorgeous concept, gorgeous world-building, gorgeous cover! Love this interview, too!

Nicole said...

AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! I will read anything Sarah Fine writes. And I have no doubt the setting will be both vivid and ominous. And "the title of the book describes him perfectly" I WANT TO KNOW MORE. Is it August yet?

Natalie @Natflix&Books said...

This sounds really interesting. I love that it has echoes of Phantom without being a retelling and the setting and world both sound very interesting. Great interview!