Review Becoming Jinn by Lori Goldstein

6:57 AM

Hey Addicts, I received a copy of of BECOMING JINN by Lori Goldstein from NetGaley in exchange for my honest opinion, so here it is! But first, read a little more about this first installment in a brand new YA series.

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.

GOODREADS

MY REVIEW:
BECOMING JINN caught my attention for 2 reasons

  1. Genie's--or rather Jinn. My first thought was Eden, the female genie from the Aladdin TV series. So boss, and so exciting to see in YA :)
  2. The blurb--this blurb promised us a world of adventure and excitement

Sadly it didn't quite deliver.
Lori Goldstein's writing style is great, she does wonderfully building the world and laws of the Jinn. Where this book bit it for me was the overall plot and the less than original characters. I knew there was going to be a lot to learn and remember just from the first page of the book.

Dropping 12 characters like that, like you need a chart because the book isn’t (and didn’t) do a good job of clarifying the mother and daughter pairs. My first thought was this: TO MANY CHARACTERS. Especially for one book, and only the first in a series at that.
Azra—she’s our heroine. I liked her……until I didn't. The first, like, 12 pages being all about how she looks since she came into her Jinn powers---------shoot me. The only thing that kept me reading was that the whole bit of it had a hefty liberal dose of grade a teen sarcasm and rebellious behavior to go with it. I liked her for the attitude. Then came her save-yo-drama-fo-yo-mama bomb when her “Zar sisters” came into the picture. Each of those 5 girls were different, yes; but nothing original or extraordinary.
Azra’s rebellion against the oppression of being a Jinn quickly went from making me snicker to making my eyes roll then finally reaching the I’m gonna smack you stage. Maybe she’d like some hater cheese to go with that hater wine. Yes, she did have a few redeeming qualities and moments that came along in all that, which again kept me reading, but it wasn’t enough to fix my overall annoyance. I think Azra had great potential, still does, if she can get over being a brat and suck it up.
I won’t go into the details about the Zar sisters because it would be a bit of a lag so let’s get down to the romance.
4 words: lover triangle insta love
I’m a fan of both, when well done. This one missed that target for me. Both guys fell into their stereotypical roles of boy next door and bad boy (ish).
Nate was the hot bad boy (ish) guy and fulfilled the insta love quota. Azra meets him then suddenly she can’t stop thinking about him, even though she doesn’t really like him. He was hot, and of the two guys I liked him the best—but I wouldn’t say he’s made my list of fav book boyfriend addictions.
Henry is the boy next door, been friends with Arza for ages, and crushed on her for just as long, only she doesn’t know he does. At one point he makes it fairly obvious that he’s into her, but she does that whole doubting thing. Then Henry makes the smart move that very few YA heroes do when the chick they like is all over another guy and being dense. He started to  move on with another girl! YEAH for HENRY! (this fact alone raised my rating by a whole star)
Still overall I liked Nate better, but the tougher guys are always my preference so…….
I mentioned the Jinn world above, which I really liked the thought and design behind it; totally intriguing. The Afrit is the ruling body (think dictator government for the Jinn world and god help you if you cross them!) After a while though it started to feel a little dystopian/big brother/elitist monarchy. I can already guess where this whole series may be going-Rebellion uprising against the government. Or at least that’s what I’ve picked up with all the foreshadowing. I could be wrong, of course, so don’t quote me.
I liked the search to find out who her father was, though again, it was a bit obvious before it was revealed. But I still liked it.
I can’t say yet if I’d consider reading the second book in this series, but I would recommend this book to those who are curious about Jinn/Genie books. The world building is very nice, just brace yourself to hear the sorted story through a whiny brat of a teen girl.

Thank you NetGalley and the publisher for allowing me to do an advanced review of this new YA book.
~Dynomoon


My debut novel, the Young Adult Contemporary Fantasy Becoming Jinn, is a modern spin on the traditional tale of wish-granting genies. It will be released on April 21, 2015, by Feiwel and Friends, an imprint of Macmillan Children’s. The sequel will follow in Spring 2016. I am represented by Lucy Carson of The Friedrich Agency.

Too much of my day involves chatting books, obsessing over The Vampire Diaries, and perfecting the art of efficient writing through Twitter. Find me at @loriagoldstein and follow my blog at www.lorigoldsteinbooks.comor my Tumblr at http://lorigoldsteinbooks.tumblr.com. Like my author page on Facebook for fun book-related photos, tidbits, and happenings as well as news on Becoming Jinn.



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