Arminzerella's Reviews > Jinx

Jinx by Meg Cabot
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Nov 20, 2009

did not like it
bookshelves: annoying, finished-but-hated, wicca, romance, young-adult-fiction, high-school, families, rivalry, magic, borrowed-from-the-library
Read in November, 2009

** spoiler alert ** Jean Honeychurch, also known as Jinx (because everything that can go wrong does, whenever she’s around), moves to New York to live with her relatives after breaking up with a guy from her hometown (in Iowa) who won’t take no for an answer. Her cousin Tory, whom Jinx remembers fondly from several years ago, is a completely different person – beautiful, sophisticated, worldly, and also, really, really mean. For no good reason. After Jinx saves hot next-door neighbor, Zach, from being hit by a bike messenger (she takes the hit herself), Tory warms up unexpectedly. She confides that she is a practicing witch, and believes Jinx may also have inherited powers from a common ancestor – Bronwyn. When Jinx refuses to join her coven, and warns Tory not to use her magic for evil, however, Tory decides to make Jinx’s life miserable. It doesn’t help that Tory has feelings for Zach, who obviously prefers Jinx.

Jinx interferes in Tory’s plans – binding her so that she can’t hurt anyone else with her magic. Tory retaliates by using “normal” means to harass and threaten the people she sees as obstacles to her plans. She takes every opportunity to hurt and humiliate Jinx, and this culminates in her attempt to steal Jinx’s powers by drinking her blood. Having finally gone too far, Tory is shipped off to boot camp (in Iowa of all places), and Jinx remains in New York on scholarship, having finally embraced her powers and the fact that Zach likes her.

I absolutely hated this book, and that’s something I very rarely say/feel about anything I read. I listened to the audio book edition, and I had to fast-forward through several scenes because I just couldn’t stand listening to Jinx/Jean bemoan her fate (and Tory’s evil plans) anymore. It’s difficult to develop any sympathy for Jean because she has this gloomy Eeyore attitude – “Everything always happens to ME.” She blames herself for everything, too, apologizes for everything, and she’s completely clueless about Zach’s feelings for her (common trope for a romance). It gets really old. Then there’s cousin Tory, who apparently used to be nice, but has undergone this transformation into Complete Psychopathic Wench from Hell. Seriously, no one is this unrelentingly evil and manipulative (unless you make the case that Tory is actually mentally ill – which no one ever does). Zach, an affable character whom we’re supposed to like as much as Jean and Tory do, is much less appealing because it’s impossible to understand what he sees in Jean – she’s so incredibly annoying! It also feels like Jean is keeping secrets from her readers (as well as everyone else) throughout her story, because the big revelations – that she has powers, that she’s used them before, that she’s guilty of misusing them like Tory – pretty much happen for readers when everyone else in the book finds out. What’s the use of being trapped in her ridiculous, annoying thoughts all the time if she’s never going to let us in? Don’t even get me started on Jean’s struggle for self-acceptance and witchy empowerment. Whatever. She won’t embrace her powers, oh no! She’s still really freaky powerful, though – yay! She finally accepts who she is! Enough! Let’s never, ever, ever revisit this story again. I’ve liked others of Meg Cabot’s novels – the first couple Princess Diaries, and Avalon High – so I was pretty shocked to have loathed this one so very much.
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03/23 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-1 of 1) (1 new)

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message 1: by Ryan (new)

Ryan Cotton I honestly think that it is your fault for choosing this novel. This novel was written for a teenage girl audience. Teen girls love it when the hot guy falls for the perfectly imperfect main character. Why? Most teen girls are in the stage where they hate things about themselves. This gives them hope. It is possible for Tory to be this evil. There are plenty of teen girls this evil. You can find them all in one place. High school. I personally loved the book. Sure it was a cliche, but these things do happen a lot in society. Zach was the common, good-looking, all-american boy. He is was smart, wealthy, and had a lovable personality. Tory was the mean girl with her too minions that we see everyday among youth. Tory loved the fact that she was older than the people she hung out with. It gave her a sense of power. Taylor was the best friend that knew everything about anything social. She is a great character with lovable qualities that we don't see enough of. Also, in the beginning, they were all smoking together. TEENS LOVE WEED. Basically, this book was great because it included real things that teens do with a little twists of magic.

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