Sunday, November 1, 2009

Make a Wish: Books about wishes

In my last post, I reviewed three books that dealt with covert operations. It was fun to review three books at once, so I thought I'd continue with the themed reviews. Now, I turn my attention to two books that I kept getting confused before I read them. Blame it on the titles and the blue covers.

If you were given three wishes, what would you wish for?

As You Wish by Jackson Pearce
(Hardcover, HarperTeen, September 2009)

When Viola's boyfriend breaks up with her, Viola feels like her whole person is broken. She no longer fits in at school. When she makes a wish to belong, a jinn appears in her room, saying that he will grant her three wishes. But as Viola's wishes dwindle down, she realizes that her main wish is to always be with Jinn. As You Wish is a thoroughly enjoyable look at what really happens when wishes come true. Viola's revelations about friendship and about herself come across as genuine and heartfelt and the ending will leave you wishing that a jinn would come grant you three wishes.

Wish by Alexandra Bullen
(Hardcover, Scholastic Point, January 2010)

Life isn't worth living for Olivia when her twin sister, Violet, dies. Then she comes across a seamstress who makes her magical dresses—dresses that make wishes come true. Olivia wishes for Violet to come back and the next thing she knows, her ghost of a sister is following her around. With Violet back in her life, Olivia doesn't need any more wishes. Touching and heartbreaking, Olivia's story is a glimpse into a family trying to cope after the loss of a child and sister. Wish is filled with the normal teenage drama but it offers a tear-jerking twist and forces the reader to acknowledge that magic can only do so much to make us whole again.


Even though these books have similar titles and covers, they each deal with wishes in a different manner. Whereas the magical seamstress in Wish appears sparingly, the jinn in As You Wish is one of the main characters. As You Wish is a lighthearted look at fairy tales, as opposed to Wish which takes on the darker subject of death and how our lives change when we lose someone we love. If you're looking for similarities, interestingly, the main character of As You Wish is named Viola and the dead twin sister in Wish is named Violet. Neither book seemed as if it was the start of a series; although, Wish does have a beautiful epilogue that leaves open the possibility of a sequel.