Wednesday, August 17, 2016

The Forbidden Wish by Jessica Khoury

She is the most powerful Jinni of all. He is a boy from the streets. Their love will shake the world... 

When Aladdin discovers Zahra's jinni lamp, Zahra is thrust back into a world she hasn't seen in hundreds of years—a world where magic is forbidden and Zahra's very existence is illegal. She must disguise herself to stay alive, using ancient shape-shifting magic, until her new master has selected his three wishes. 

But when the King of the Jinn offers Zahra a chance to be free of her lamp forever, she seizes the opportunity—only to discover she is falling in love with Aladdin. When saving herself means betraying him, Zahra must decide once and for all: is winning her freedom worth losing her heart?

As time unravels and her enemies close in, Zahra finds herself suspended between danger and desire in this dazzling retelling of Aladdin from acclaimed author Jessica Khoury.

Rating: 2,5/5 Stars

This was a story that started with a lot of potential; beautiful writing, vibrant setting, funny and compelling characters... but soon, it got boring.


The Forbidden Wish is an Aladdin retelling with the Jinn’s point of view. After being kept prisoner in her lamp for hundreds of years, Zahra is finally set free by the thief Aladdin, who is set on revenge for the death of his parents at the hands of a tyrannical ruler.

Like I said, the beginning of the story was wonderful! The characters were amazing, both well-rounded and their interactions could be super funny.

I liked how, even though there were some hints of romance here and there, it wasn’t overpowering or heavy handed; Aladdin was a womanizer and yet Zahra wasn’t jealous or anything, their interactions were mostly friendly at first.

But then, the romance began and it came OUT OF NOWHERE.

I tend to cringe whenever there’s a character who is hundreds even THOUSANDS years old and yet acts like a silly teenager because… well it doesn’t seem realistic. After that much time you’re bound to change and have a different perspective. That doesn’t happen here, Zahra is (three thousand? Four thousand?) years old and yet suddenly she was blushing and stammering and feeling rejected for silly little things. It became annoying! We had a Jinn thousands of years old and yet she behaved like a sixteen year old.

The romance between her and Aladdin wasn’t believable to me because, even though they had decent chemistry, it suddenly became undying love in FIVE SECONDS. Not to mention how Aladdin had always been a womanizer, believing himself in love only to discover he really wasn’t and move on to the next girl. I don’t see why his relationship with Zahra would be any different, and yet it was deemed as “true love” and what not.


I don’t mind romance, I really don’t. But you need to show me why those two characters belong together or else I won’t buy it.

The plot was ok at first, but the author started focusing more on the relationship between the main characters and less in the main conflict, that left the narration feeling clunky and rushed. Nothing would happen for three chapters and suddenly BOOM! Everything unfolds in one, and then it went back to the romance.

There were also a few things I didn’t understand. Zahra claimed that after thousands of years granting wishes, she was very imaginative. Yet, when she had to fight instead of turning herself into a beast or something powerful and monstrous like she had done so many times before, she just changes her clothes to leather and makes a sword? How is that helpful???????

After the fifty percent mark the story got so boring to me, I had simply no desire to keep reading. The book is not too long and yet it took me forever to get to the end simply because I didn’t want to pick up the book, I was happy to let it sit on my table.

I didn’t like the ending or how things were resolved, as Katerina said, it was very HEA. And when I say very I mean TOO FUCKING MUCH. Things were solved way too easily and with little effort, it made it look anticlimactic.

Overall, The Forbidden Wish was a book with a wonderful premise and good characters, only the romance was insta-love and the resolution disappointing.

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