Marielle is waiting to go to college when her grandfather dies and leave her with an enchanted rock and a nursery. The rock is the home of a Djinn.
Marielle needs to make three wishes as soon as possible and trap the Djinn, named Faris, back into the rock before things get complicated. However, she makes friends with him.
She is one wish away to uncover why her grandfather was friends with Faris but ended up being angry at him. She is one wish away from uncovering a brother rivalry. She is one wish away from discovering what her grandfather did that changed people around her. She is one wish away from breaking Faris’s heart and becoming part of a mortal combat between two spell-bound Djinn: Faris and Zet. She is one wish away from dying.
Marielle is a girl down-to-earth facing ordinary problems who happens to live in a world of magic. She is not a chosen one, and she does not blindly embrace the Djinns gifts. The characters felt real and three-dimensional. The pace of the novel developed naturally. Nothing was rushed or going at breaking neck speed, but each page contained its own mysteries and the secrets kept piling on top of the other.
What I liked two things in this book: first, the way the author refreshed the Djinn trope, and second, the way she complicated everything, even the simplest of things. For example, when Marielle uses one wish to heal someone, it doesn’t foster the reaction she hopes for. Being good isn’t as simple as that.
The author surprised me by the twists and unexpected encounters. I suggest this novel to writers who want to understand how to work tension into their stories. Seymour crafts each scene so well, they keep the reader on the edge of their seat. The characters are hindered in their progress by their past and the memory of traumatic events. It feels realistic.
If I had to change anything in this novel, I would have liked Marielle to explore more deeply the main theme: if you had three wishes, what would you be, selfish or selfless? Marielle seems to look up to her grandfather as a role model and wants to get rid of her task as fast as possible. In a way she sounds younger than her age. It’s not really explained why she actually opens the box where the Djinn is contained because she seems so opposed to it. She could have left it untouched. This part could have been more believable in my opinion.
This being said, there are so many layers in this story, it feels more than the ordinary paranormal romance. There are several mysteries going on at the same time to keep track of. Nothing is straightforward, so if you decide to try this novel, do not take anything for granted.
Length: 333 pages