As You Wish

Jackson Pearce, August 2009.  This light fairytale about falling in love with a jinn, or genie, doesn’t make a lot of sense – but maybe it doesn’t need to.  The story begins after Viola’s boyfriend Lawrence has broken up with her because he’s gay, and so she feels invisible, except when she’s painting.  She apparently wishes (silently) for visibility so very hard that a jinn is assigned to her (we don’t know why).  She calls him “Jinn.”  She has to make three wishes, but she won’t (again we don’t really know why). After the third wish, he can return to his home world of Caliban, where everyone is happy and lives forever. 

For some reason, Jinn falls in love with Viola – this is inexplicable since just a few days before he found her and all humans boring and superficial, and since a jinn has never before fallen for a human – so he’s torn between his old world and his new love. The ending doesn’t make a lot of sense either, but it is, of course, a happy one.

I do like the gay content.  Lawrence is a supporting character, but he’s a positively portrayed gay teen boy.  His and Viola’s school even has a hint of gaytopia: “[R]evealing his sexuality has elevated Lawrence’s status from just a notch or two above mine to that of a full-fledged member of the school’s Royal Family. Every girl wants a gay friend, I guess,” muses Viola early in the book, and it’s true that coming out does seem to have improved Lawrence’s popularity.  Recommend to your tweens who like light fantasy, but older kids will see through the plot holes.

This entry was posted in 2009, fantasy, gay male, gaytopia, high school, Jackson Pearce, romance, secondary queer character. Bookmark the permalink.

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