Sunday, August 16, 2009

Review (T2T): As You Wish by Jackson Pearce

Publication date: Aug. 25, 2009 (HarperTeen)

Tags: YA, magic, genies, art, love

Rating: 4.5 out of 5


After her best friend and boyfriend, Lawrence, breaks out with her by coming out, Viola has desperately wished to feel as if she belonged to something meaningful and passionate again. Her strong desire summons Jinn out of his genie world to grant her three wishes.

Jinn just wants to get the wishes over with so that he can return home to the safe and predictable loveliness of Caliban. Viola holds off on wishing, however, unsure of what it is she wants, exactly, and Jinn is forced to remain in the mortal world with her. As the days pass, Jinn comes to care for her more than he has ever cared about anyone before, and Viola finds that she can’t live without him.

But when Viola makes her third and final wish, Jinn will be forced to leave her life forever.


Sounds like the synopsis for the next Disney movie, right? Maybe—but it’s one that would appeal to both the children AND the parents. AS YOU WISH took me by surprise with its sincere charm, lighthearted humor, and the best kind of romance.

The development of Viola and Jinn’s relationship from master-genie to romantic love was extraordinarily well done. It was subtle and likable, like a romantic comedy movie unfolding before your eyes, except in words. It seemed completely natural for them to start off wary of one another and then to develop into friends, and finally something more. It is rare nowadays to find a romance that doesn’t start off from insta-connection and physical attraction, so Viola and Jinn’s relationship stands out to me in the best way.

Likewise, supporting characters are also realistic. With the exception of maybe Aaron, I could believe in the genuineness of the characters’ interactions with one another. Lawrence in particular is a standout secondary character, one whose fate post-story we can actually feel ourselves caring about.

Perhaps the greatest thing about AS YOU WISH, however, is Jackson Pearce’s effortless narration. How many authors can truly tell a charming story out of a concept that rides the fence on being sweet and too saccharine? AS YOU WISH didn’t read like a forced novel to me, but more like me experiencing a good friend’s story, or living out my favorite romantic comedy. I found myself crying through the ending, so involved was I in Jinn, Viola, and Lawrence’s story.

Don’t be fooled by its childlike cover and fairy tale premise. AS YOU WISH makes you believe in wish-granters and the fact that love can triumph all. This is magical realism at its best, completely worth the list price, and one of the best love stories I’ve read all year.

Similar Authors
Meg Cabot
E. Lockhart

Writing: 4/5
Characters: 5/5
Plot: 5/5

Overall Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Cover discussion: 1 out of 5 - Um... NO!!! You don't have an idiotic looking girl on the cover of ANY book, much less a good one. The model looks like she just had her wisdom teeth pulled and is plotting a way to get back at her dentist. I hope they realize they need to change this in the paperback version.

This review is brought to you by Traveling to Teens, created and run (mostly) by Yan.

Thank you, Khy, for lending me your copy for review!


  1. What a great review! I must say I am surprised, because the cover made me roll my eyes and move along. But this sounds so darn cute and sweet and lovely that I may just have to pick it up!

  2. LOL to the cover xD It is pretty horrendous.

  3. Yeah the girl on the original cover looked a lot better, and she looked to be the right age. This girl looks like she's 13 and her attitude is nothing like the character's in the book.

  4. *snorts @ cover part* So true, unfortunately.

    Anyway, I agree with most of your review. xD Great review. :D

  5. Wow, nice review. I think you've pretty much sold me on wanting to read this one. And LOL on your thoughts of the cover.


  6. Great review! I'm definitely looking forward to reading As You Wish.

    I agree - the girl on the cover does looks a bit silly. It would be sooo much better without her.

  7. OMG I want to read this book so, so bad!!! And I agree--that girl does look kind of silly up there, as Wendy said. Yikes...

  8. *snorts Dr. pepper through nose* looks like she just had her wisdom teeth removed - HA HA HA !!!

    So glad you liked this book as it seemed really interesting to me ! Think I'll wait for the paperback though ;D

  9. I can't wait to read this! Brilliant review :)

  10. Jackson is a pro; I couldn't believe how well done & well written this book was when I first read it.

  11. Yup. I'm dying for this one, too! Almost there...

  12. This has been on my radar for a while, but yours is the first review I've come across. It sounds like a must-read!

  13. I love this cover, it makes me giggle and I've been wanting to read this book for so long I'm happy it comes out amazing :)

  14. I hate the cover. It looks just ... horrible. The book sounds good. A little like Rachel Caine's Weather Warden series. Genie stays with girl, genie falls in love with girl, and they find a way to be together!

  15. Okay -- definitely want to read this! Anything with a realistic, well-developed relationship immediately grabs my attention. Great review!

  16. Great review!This sounds interesting.

  17. Great review! I think it's the second or third great one I see of this book, so I'm seriously considering reading it now. I wasn't sure at first; like you said, the childish cover would have fooled me!

  18. I already have this book on pre-order at amazon. It looks amazing!

    And I am so glad that you feel that way about the cover. It makes me cringe. Thankfully the story seems to be strong enough to push past a bad art department.

  19. Can't wait to read it. If it is anything like her blog and vlogs, it'll be an instant hit.

  20. I have a pic of Jackson holding the book where it looks much better...check it out.

  21. I have heard such good things about this, guess I'll have to check it out

  22. Hey Steph! I've been looking forward to this book before I even knew what this book is about. Gotta hand it to Jackson Pearce and her one-girl marketing campaign (have you seen her YouTube videos? They're hilarious). I cannot wait for this book to come out. I'm glad it got your stamp of approval. And thank you for following. That means so much to me.

  23. She does look like she's at the dentist - good call!

  24. Great review! I've been wondering about whether to put this book on my wishlist or not, now I know it definitively goes on my WL =D

    The cover is really boring! That's a shame when obviously the story is great. I know that I shouldn't judge a book by it's cover but many people do.


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