Book Talk


As You Wish by Jackson Pearce
Publication Date: August 25, 2009
Publisher: HarperTeen
Pages: 304
Keywords: genie, romance, art
Format Read: hardcover from publisher in exchange for an honest review (thank you!)

Summary: Ever since Viola’s boyfriend broke up with her, she has spent her days silently wishing — to have someone love her again and, more importantly, to belong again — until one day she inadvertently summons a young genie out of his world and into her own. He will remain until she makes three wishes. 
Jinn is anxious to return home, but Viola is terrified of wishing, afraid she will not wish for the right thing, the thing that will make her truly happy. As the two spend time together, the lines between master and servant begin to blur, and soon Jinn can’t deny that he’s falling for Viola. But it’s only after Viola makes her first wish that she realizes she’s in love with Jinn as well… and that if she wishes twice more, he will disappear from her life — and her world — forever. 

I’ve had this book forever, and this week when I was picking out what I was going to read, it was sitting on the top of my “A” pile. (Yes, I have all my books alphabetized.) So I grabbed it, and sure enough, I finished it that night. This book was so cute.

Jinn appears to Viola (he’s a jinn, which is essentially a genie, but she calls him Jinn because she’s weirded out that he doesn’t have a name) because she’s desperate to feel like she belongs. Which, okay, I get, but I don’t get how she can be wishing so badly that she conjures a jinn because she’s got her whole life ahead of her, but that’s okay. The book got so good I ended up not caring.

She’s an artist, and she struggles with painting for passion, and as the book develops and she becomes better friends with Jinn, she begins to develop that skill to do so. It was great watching Viola grow as a character. Of course, at first, she thinks she wants to be popular and have the boy and hang with all the cool kids in school. The interesting spin was that Jinn didn’t have to deal with this old version of Viola on his own — he befriended her best friend and former boyfriend, Lawrence (who was actually gay, but it still hit Viola hard). I really enjoyed the friendship between Jinn and Lawrence, it made this book more than just a cutesy fluff book, it added some actual dimensions to the characters.

As far as the plot, yes, it was extremely predictable. But this book was SO FREAKING CUTE I didn’t care. None of the predictability actually mattered because I was just so in love with the premise and Jinn and Lawrence. Definitely a super fun summer-y read.

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