Saturday, June 24, 2017

Becoming Jinn by Lori Goldstein

Summary from Goodreads:
Forget everything you thought you knew about genies!

Azra has just turned sixteen, and overnight her body lengthens, her olive skin deepens, and her eyes glisten gold thanks to the brand-new silver bangle that locks around her wrist. As she always knew it would, her Jinn ancestry brings not just magical powers but the reality of a life of servitude, as her wish granting is controlled by a remote ruling class of Jinn known as the Afrit.

To the humans she lives among, she’s just the girl working at the snack bar at the beach, navigating the fryer and her first crush. But behind closed doors, she’s learning how to harness her powers and fulfill the obligations of her destiny.

Mentored by her mother and her Zar “sisters”, Azra discovers she may not be quite like the rest of her circle of female Jinn . . . and that her powers could endanger them all. As Azra uncovers the darker world of becoming Jinn, she realizes when genies and wishes are involved, there’s always a trick.
I was hoping to like this a lot more than I did. I just feel kind of meh about the whole thing. I didn’t love it. I guess I didn’t’ hate it either. Basically, the concept was super cool and interesting. But, the execution was kind of sloppy and needed some more work. I never really understood or cared too much for the main character. Characters, overall, weren't very developed and I’m definitely a character reader.

The world building and genie details were super cute and fun to read about. I loved that they all loved sugar and were supposed to be a part of this everlasting sisterhood. The power of women comes off really strong here. I loved the friendships and the secret gossip of the older generation of jinn.
Not a lot happens though. Basically, Azra becomes a jinn on her 16th birthday as she knows she will. And then she makes one mistake after another. All her mistakes are kind of stupid, and easily could have been avoided if she listened to her mom and did her research. And instead of learning from past mistakes, she seems to continuously make them. Ugh.
There’s also a love triangle. But, I don’t actually ship her with either of the guys. I just don’t feel like I know either them enough to make a ship. One guy is super cute and likes saving people. And the other has basically been in love with the main character since childhood. But, I’m not really sure what he does for fun, or what he’s about. Ugh. I was hoping for more emotional connections and sparks.
The major twist at the end was totally predictable. The main character is super powerful, more so than anyone else and well, it doesn’t take a genius to figure out why…I do like the family mystery/drama though. I wanted to know more about her parents. And I found the whole magic book and talisman thing to be super fun to read.
I did read this relatively quickly. It had a cutesy/Sabrina the teenage witch type of feel. The magic and family drama was fun. I never felt like I understood really why the main character was so angsty and pushed everyone away. I never really believed her rebellious act. And I never felt like I got to know the two love interests that well either. I wish I had more time with other Jinn because they seemed super interesting.  I give it a 5/10.

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