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The Art of Wishing #1

The Art of Wishing

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He can grant her wishes, but only she can save his life.

Margo McKenna has a plan for just about everything, from landing the lead in her high school play to getting into a good college. So when she finds herself in possession of a genie's ring and the chance to make three wishes, she doesn't know what to do. Why should she put her life into someone else's hands?

But Oliver is more than just a genie -- he's also a sophomore at Margo's high school, and he's on the run from a murderer. As he and Margo grow closer, she discovers that it will take more than three wishes to save him.

A whole lot more.

314 pages, Hardcover

First published March 21, 2013

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About the author

Lindsay Ribar

4 books223 followers
Lindsay Ribar lives in New York City, where she works in book publishing by day and writes YA novels by night. She attends far too many concerts, watches far too much nerdy TV, and consumes fanfiction like it's made out of chocolate. She is fond of wine, cheese, and countries where they speak English but with really cool accents. Oh, and she has a Harry Potter tattoo.

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5 stars
571 (26%)
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679 (31%)
3 stars
626 (29%)
2 stars
202 (9%)
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73 (3%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 330 reviews
Profile Image for Lindsay Ribar.
Author 4 books223 followers
August 10, 2016
Someone blackmailed me into five-starring my own book. It wasn't my idea! I swear it wasn't! I would never do something so uncouth of my own free will! *

*This entire paragraph is a lie.

ETA 5/6/14: In honor of the forthcoming release of the paperback edition (or, more accurately, because I felt like it), I'm doing something that I've seen a handful of other authors do here. I mean, why not, right? Here goes....


1. When I’m Up (Great Big Sea)
2. Stinging Velvet (Neko Case)
3. Faster (Matt Nathanson)
4. Lake of Silver Bells (Carbon Leaf)
5. I Wish I Was the Moon (Neko Case)
6. Hand Me Downs (Indigo Girls)
7. Tip Toe (Carbon Leaf)
8. Zuma (Coyote Grace)
9. Genie in a Bottle (Christina Aguilera)
10. Another Mystery (Dar Williams)
11. Consequence Free (Great Big Sea)
12. Bound (Suzanne Vega)
13. The Story (Brandi Carlile)
14. Seed (Carbon Leaf)
Profile Image for Suzanne.
255 reviews26 followers
May 27, 2013
Sigh. I really wanted to like this. It was enjoyable until about two-thirds of the way, and then a plot twist with the antagonist made everything we'd been pacing ourselves and hoping for ruined. I don't need a book to be predictable but don't make me care about plot points that soon become irrelevant.

Even worse was the ending, so abrupt and vague. Um, what about her parents? What about everyone else in her world? Seriously, this is the end, with no explanation of what comes next, and we're supposed to swallow it and be happy? There's no satisfaction here. I can see a bit where the author is going but so much is left up in the air and cast aside.

I don't like to be led around and made to care about things that don't matter. Don't even get me started on the final battle. The logic of this book only holds up if you nod your head and breeze by all details. If you actually want to appreciate a book's plot points rather than just swallow them and move on with your life, never to read the book again and sort of wishing you hadn't wasted a couple hours of your life, this might not be your book.
Profile Image for Christina (A Reader of Fictions).
4,230 reviews1,650 followers
August 13, 2014
4.5 stars

As often happens, I really didn't have any expectations going into this book. Based on the cover, it looks like a sweet contemporary with a little magic and music. That seems awesome enough to give the book a chance, so when Steph offered to loan me her ARC, I went for it. Ladies and gentlemen, I made a very good choice. The Art of Wishing gave me so much joy.

At the beginning, we meet Margo as she auditions for the school musical, Sweeney Todd, which is freaking awesome by the way. She dreams of being Mrs. Lovett, and she knows she has the talent for it. This play and part have always been amongst her favorites, and, finally, she's a senior and deserving of a starring role. Imagine her frustrated surprise when some sophomore gets cast as Mrs. Lovett instead, leaving her to play Toby.

Margo does not take this well, but who would, really? Vicky Willoughbee, part-stealer, isn't even any good, though everyone else sure seems to think that she is the next coming of Patti LuPone. Margo has this wonderfully bratty sense of entitlement that totally fits with how I know I felt as a teen. I just deserved certain things and was not well-pleased when I didn't get them. Though Margo throws herself into her own part, and does masterfully, everyone can still sense her displeasure, much as she tries to hide it. Oh, theater drama, how I love reading about you.

I just loved Margo. She has such wonderfully snarky narration, at least in her head. Like me and Julia from Meant to Be, she doesn't necessarily do well with the quips in pressure situations, such as when her crush speaks to her. I especially loved that when Simon, a hot, Asian, theatrical bit of deliciousness that she was crushing on, talked to her, her nervousness came out as disinterest rather than awkward flirting. That's not something I've really seen happen in a book before, but that is totally how I roll.

Anyway, the tenacious Margo certainly will not just give up. She finds out what's going on, namely that Vicky got a wish from Oliver, heretofore a largely ignored annoyance, only averagely cute, taking an abundance of photos for the yearbook. Wait, what? Oh yeah, turns out Oliver is a genie. We're all surprised to find they're not blue with the vocal stylings of Robin Williams.

Honestly, I wasn't sure about the whole genie thing initially, but Ribar did an amazing job of coming up with her own lore and really convincing me. I really don't have a single criticism about this part, and I really appreciated that, for the most part, it didn't feel heavily paranormal, but more like a contemporary novel in a world with a little more magic. Also, I love that the cover completely conveys this book, though, let me warn you, the book is not as fluffy as the cover suggests. There are a few disturbing scenes.

Most of the characters do take a back seat characterization-wise, because they're just not in the book much. Margo, Oliver, and to a lesser degree, Margo's best friend Naomi, are well-developed though. I want to talk about Naomi just a little bit. Naomi, as happens in a lot of YA novels, is the braver, more popular friend. Unlike what usually is the case though, Margo does not begrudge her for that or envy Naomi for her popularity in the slightest. She likes taking the backseat and not having as many friends. She's not an especially social person and she has no problem with that about herself. An introvert who acts like an introvert! Yay! Also, even better, Naomi, unlike some of the shinier friends, always has Margo's best interests at heart. Though I don't get to see as much of Naomi as I would have liked, I got the sense that they had a true friendship.

As with the best friend, with Oliver Ribar did a good job consciously avoiding some YA tropes. First off, I loved that initially, she hardly noticed him and that he wasn't the kind of guy that attracted tons of female attention. He is also younger than she is (at least right now), which I haven't seen happen much. Once they really meet, though, they develop this delightful banter, which just made my heart happy. They established a real connection, which made their instalove, which, yes, sadly does appear, less annoying than it otherwise might have been. However, what I really love their relationship is that Margo made pretty much all of the first moves and was sort of leading the relationship, that she definitely was bothered by some things (a logical reaction) rather than just accepting everything like it was easy, and that she never got jealous that Oliver had a past. Margo avoided so many of the heroine pitfalls and I wanted to fistbump Lindsay Ribar every time.

Unfortunately, I do feel that a whole lot of plot threads got dropped along the way. As I mentioned, I loved that the book was set around a production of the high school musical, so I really wish that the actual performance had been included. The same goes for Naomi. Margo and Naomi were having a fight, and that never got resolved. Vicky never gets any sort of resolution either. I just feel like these things could all have been tied up a bit better, though it would be tricky with the ending as is. Speaking of which, I'm not a huge fan with the direction the book went in; I'd had a couple different theories for how the book might conclude, and, sadly, I liked them better than how Ribar did choose to close the novel.

While The Art of Wishing may not be quite a perfect book, I want everyone to know that if I only factored how much I enjoyed the book into my rating, then it would be a 5, no question. As it is, I will still be telling everybody that they should read this book, since it is adorable and a half, with a bonus of pop culture references, including The Princess Bride. I know I'll need to be getting my own copy when it comes out in March.
Profile Image for Dana.
440 reviews290 followers
September 2, 2016

“...Oh God. I'm one of those girls."
"What girls?" he asked, perplexed.
"Those girls. The ones in all those books and TV shows. Some dumb high school girl falls in love with some supernatural guy, and he's all, 'Behold, I am five million years old!' and she's all, 'Oh my god, how can you ever love pathetic little me!' and he's like, 'Because of destiny!' or whatever. It's just so...ew. You know?” - The Art of Wishing

When I opened this book i was a little hesitant about the font size. Yes I know that may seem silly but in my experience a larger font size is generally geared towards tweens and under. Nevertheless i soldiered on and lucky that i did because i was hooked from the first couple chapters. The writing is flawless.

I loved the dialogue between Margo and Oliver. All too often in young adult books the main character and his/her love interest either fall in love instantly and go 0 to 60 in one second flat, which in my opinion is too jarring. OR you get the opposite end of the spectrum where the two lovers are mortal enemies upon meeting and are disgusted by each other for majority of the book. For me this writing holds the perfect balance between the two and therefore makes their relationship very realistic,well as realistic as you could imagine a relationship with a genie could be. :P

The plot was great and there were so many nail biting twists that i never saw coming. I couldn't put this book down, I literally read it in one sitting. The villain was amazing, i always enjoy a villain that you can understand or even relate to, that might do terrible things but is not 100% pure evil. Good people are capable of doing terrible acts for what they believe is right. This book is a good reminder of that.

Big ramble about ending incoming.

The whole concept of genies and the rules that they are governed by really makes you think, I love the impossible decisions created in this novel. I often wondered what choices i would have made if i was in the characters place and it was an impossible feat. My only qualm about this amazing book is that i did not really understand why

If this was a stand alone book i would have given it 4/5 because of the ending, but since there is more to come and i am confident in the questionable choices being validated, I give this book a hearty 5/5. Amazing job Ms.Ribar!
Profile Image for Purcheria.
658 reviews22 followers
January 17, 2013
2.5 - 3 stars

Let me start off by saying that this was an Uncorrected Proof ARC provided by Netgalley. And as such I don't know if there will be any changes.

Okay, on to the review. Honestly speaking, this book was okay. The premise was a good one but story failed to grab me. And truth be told I was bored at times. Don't get me wrong, the book wasn't bad per se, it's just that there were certain aspects of the story that felt a bit forced. Like the romance. For me, it did not seem believable. I don't see how or when they fell in love with each other. One minute they like each other, and the next there in love. Enough that she ended up doing what she did at the end of the book? Really?
And what was weird was that throughout the book, I could not picture the characters as being the age that they were supposed to be. I kept imagining two 15-16 yr olds. I don't really know why, maybe they seemed immature for their ages? Who knows...But I just could not see Margo as being eighteen. And speaking of the characters, they had no depth to them. None of them. I could not relate to them at all.
Oh! And the villain. Xavier. The reasons behind his murderous plotting were just so dumb, ridiculous and stupid I really had a hard time wrapping my head around it. I mean, really? . That is why you're killing them off? I admit to having rolled my eyes quite a few times while I read his monologues. It just seemed so farfetched and again...forced.
The end of the book was a bit more enjoyable, but again the decision that she made left me scratching my head because I did not feel that great love she had for him that would allow her to make that decision..It just seemed so random.
But, even after all this, I was curious enough to finish it, which is what earned it that extra .5 star. And, I could see how a lot of people would like this book, unfortunately it just wasn't for me.
Profile Image for Ginny.
1,323 reviews14 followers
April 1, 2013
What is my Favorite Book of 2013 so far? Oh just this one! And you can find the full on review here

Why did The Art of Wishing grab my attention so quickly? One word: GENIE. Seriously, I cannot think of a YA book in which a genie is the lead. (If there is another, please share it with me!) And it doesn't hurt that the genie is a boy! Needless to say, I was quite excited to begin this book.

And I started reading...

And kept reading....

And suddenly I realized I needed some sleep. So I slept for 3 hours....

Then finished reading the book!

Yeah, I loved it that much. It wasn't just the genie and wish aspect, but it was the characters as well.
Profile Image for Casey.
215 reviews18 followers
July 23, 2012
I feel fortunate that I was able to read this book so early, and so I'll give a really brief review noting some of my favorite abstract-ish things about it, so that you too can be really excited to pick it up when it comes out.

First, particularly in YA and urban fantasy in which we see so many vampires and werewolves and fairies (not that I don't LIKE these things, but we have seen a lot of them), I am really appreciative of more original or rare mythologies. Having a genie as the "monster boyfriend" is new and different in itself, but Ribar also has a deft hand with an original system of magic that works for them.

Second, there is an interesting treatment of some issues of gender which I really responded to. I even love that on the cover the gender of the characters isn't immediately obvious.

Overall, it was a really fun, engaging read. Having heard the author do a reading I knew that I was going to respond well to the writing style and humor, and I did! For fans of YA paranormal romance, I hope you're looking forward to this one, because it's something very fresh!
Profile Image for Danielle.
458 reviews32 followers
April 23, 2013
Oh my stars, this book! It came across my desk at the library and I went "Huh, genies? That's different."

I figured I'd give it a shot. I could not put it down.

And now I have to wait till 2014 for book two? Ugh. I really need to learn patience or invent a time machine.

Profile Image for Pixie.
Author 5 books124 followers
March 25, 2013
The Art of Wishing could very well be one of my favorites so far this year. And possibly, one of the most memorable books I’ve read in some time.

To say that it was flawless would be a lie, because it did have its minor flaws--like a bit of an insta-love romance which on this rare occasion I found myself glossing over, and just genuinely enjoying this entertaining and refreshing story beyond that. The characters set this one a part from many of the reads I’ve picked up the last few months…its quirkiness and outright charm made me smile from the first page, and I found it a complete non-stop page-turner until the last.

I really enjoyed Margo’s wit and snark… as well as her take-charge attitude. I like heroines like this. None of that shy, timid, damsel-in-distress personality. None of that “awkward girl” with no friends or depressing home life (though her own home life is a bit on the unusual side and annoys her at times). Margo isn’t quite the popular girl, but she has her small group of friends, along with her best friend that I also adored. In some ways, she reminded me of my own high school days.

The villain had real motive. He was what I felt every bad guy should be portrayed as. There wasn’t any of that “I want the girl! You shall give her to me!” thing that’s often seen in the genre. It was just a pure evil guy gone crazy and he made sense to the story. Thank. You.

So, I don’t have a lot to say about The Art of Wishing other than a bunch of gushing about how much I just adored this book. It’s fun and charming and…completely magical! If you’re thinking about reading this one, don’t hesitate. It’s a definite must-read!

Profile Image for Carmen .
759 reviews67 followers
October 1, 2013

4.5 stars

*look of absolute joy and horror



OH. MY. GOD. THE. COVER. I LOVE IT. EEEEEKKK, now that just makes me want this book more than EVER. (Come faster 2013.)



It reminds me of As You Wish by Jackson Pearce with a dark twist- I WANT IT NOW.

Profile Image for Alexa.
351 reviews278 followers
March 18, 2013

My review can also be found on my blog Collections.

As soon as I read chapter one, I knew The Art of Wishing was going to be different from what I expected. It did have some things I hoped to find: cute, romantic moments with a bit of drama and angst throughout. But what was different was that even though the characters were in high school, I had to keep reminding myself that they were in fact NOT in middle school. There were moments that would never be found in a middle-grade read, but it still read like it was for a younger audience. Since I didn't find the age of the characters believable, it was hard for me to connect with the story and the characters.

The main character Margo frustrated me. She had valid reasons for the way she acted and treated Oliver, the genie, during parts of the book, but some of the things she got upset over bugged me. She accused Oliver of lying about his age, yet she knew he was a genie and should have immediately put two and two together and known that he wasn't actually a 16-year-old kid. I mean, she referenced Aladdin and other stories, so I don't see why she never figured that out. As for Oliver, he didn't annoy me. I was fine with him. I thought his past was interesting. He was as up-front and honest as he could be with Margo. That being said, he kind of was a bit bland, and I didn't think he was swoon-worthy like Margo did.

It didn't take long for Margo and Oliver to fall for each other. I wasn't surprised by this, but their romance happened pretty quickly. While I did hope they found a way to be together, at the same time, I never felt the spark I like to find between two characters who love and care about each other. They had their reasons for liking each other. It just wasn't something I cared 100% about. Basically, I rooted for Margo and Oliver only because I knew I was suppose to, not because I found their relationship believable or epic.

The Art of Wishing had some of the drama and angst and romance I was expecting. Unfortunately, I never clicked with the story or the characters. It's an easy read to get through though. The ending left enough room for the sequel. I'm just wondering how this would lead to a third book (it's a planned trilogy). I won't be reading the rest, but if you're curious about this trilogy, then you might want to read this first book.
Profile Image for Nasty Lady MJ.
1,059 reviews16 followers
August 20, 2014
To see full duo-logy review click here.

This book is what I want from a YA book. It’s cute, fluffy, and actually has substance. And did I mention it features genies…and I’m in desperate need of a good YA genie book but never seem to get my wish.

Until this book.

In the words of Katy Schwartz, sweet baby Jesus.

This book is cute. Made of kittens, sunshine, and all things perfect.

Let’s start with the main character.

I actually liked Margo. Yes, she had some bonehead teenage moments, but I didn’t want to rip her hair off like I did with a lot of YA protagonists. Oh yeah, she still makes mistakes but she actually felt her age.

I also liked the love interest which I really didn’t think I would. Oliver is not your stereotypical YA boy and I think that’s what I liked the most about him. It’s true, the romantic relationship between him and Margo developed a little too fast for my tastes, but Ribar made sure that their insta love sort of had some pitfalls. So, the development really just worked.

I also loved the plot.

When I first read the summary, I thought it was going to be pure fluff. However, color me surprise when Ribar added a killer genie in to the mix. And strangely enough, it worked. The book would’ve been bland without it. Well, fluffy but bland. The killer genie though was pretty awesome. I liked the twist to the whole freeing the genie plot and it really added dimensions to the second book.

I tried to find faults in the first book, but to be honest I couldn’t find anything that major enough to gripe about. Just saying that makes me feel all teary eyed. Because I rarely ever get to say it. And it’s such an awesome feeling when I can’t complain.

I thought for sure there’d be some complaining with a killer genie coming out in an otherwise fluffy book…

But nope.
Profile Image for Colette.
562 reviews51 followers
February 11, 2015
Overall I enjoyed this book. However, there were moments where the characters and their actions didn't feel as authentic or relatable as I would have liked. That said, the unique plot and cliffhanger ending enticed me enough to read the sequel.
Profile Image for Tim Federle.
Author 20 books694 followers
March 22, 2012
Genies. Hot boys. "Sweeney Todd" references.

Profile Image for Alexandra Christo.
Author 10 books4,892 followers
January 1, 2022
A paranormal romance that isn't vampires or werewolves? Score! Don't get me wrong, I'm Team Angel (and Team Spike), but it's nice to have a change of scenery.

Lindsay Rabar did an awesome job of crafting characters that were loveable and completely realistic. Which is a pretty hard thing to do when the main premise is about a genie. Needless to say I devoured this book.

Margo was great and there wasn't a moment when I wasn't routing for her. She wasn't whiny and insecure like a lot of YA heroines – no damsel looking to be saved and no nonsensical jealous moments. She was strong, determined and accepted Oliver's past. And she had so many bad-ass Girl Power moments that I couldn't help but cheer. Out loud. Several times.

As for Oliver – WOW. Hands-down my new favourite Book Boy. His one-liners were some of the best I've read and his attitude toward being a genie was really great. He wasn't brooding and 'oh-so-tormented' about being supernatural, but actually really liked his life and enjoyed helping people. As for his relationship with Margo: HELLO. Their connection was deep and believable and their chemistry was smokin' up my pages!

I also loved how Lindsay didn't ignore previously established mythology or the clichés, but embraced them. Oliver poked fun at being a genie, even making references to Robin Williams in Aladdin (making me giggle like a child). And Margo was so cool: "Those girls. The ones in all the books and TV shows. Some high school girl falls in love with some supernatural guy, and he's all, 'Behold, I am five million years old!' and she's all, 'Oh my god, how can you ever love pathetic little me?' and he's like, 'Because of destiny!' or whatever. It's just so ... ew."

Also Lindsay's genie mythology was really unique. I liked the little twists in Oliver's past and in the whole 'wishing you free' scenario. And Oliver's background reveal was fascinating and really different from anything else I've read or seen.

But this isn't just some fluffy genie romance. There are some pretty intense / disturbing parts and some great action scenes. The villain is a real villain with a psychotic motive that he truly believes is right. He was sinister and twisted and smart. And I was on the edge of my mattress.

I'm so glad I stumbled upon The Art of Wishing, because this has definitely earned a spot on my favourites list. Fans of romance, paranormal, magic, fantasy and, well, READING, should all fall in love with The Art of Wishing.

Favourite quote:"Nobody ever feels just one way about another person. I can see a million things you want from me, just like the million things I want from you. Some of them are wonderful. Some are awful. Some contradict each other and some don't make sense at all. But none of those things matter. What matters is what you do about them."
Profile Image for Audrey Wilkerson.
438 reviews23 followers
March 21, 2013
Rating: 3

The Low Down: Margo McKenna is super pumped. The tryouts for the school musical are today, and she knows that she’s going to kill it. After her audition, everyone is so happy with her performance. She knows she will get to play the part of Mrs. Lovett, the female lead in Sweeney Todd. When the results are posted, however, she’s in for a shock: some sophomore that she’s never heard of gets Mrs. Lovett, and she is stuck in the part of Tobias Rigg, a character who only has two songs and is a boy.

Rehearsals are a disaster; Vicky, their erstwhile Mrs. Lovett, is horrible. But that’s not the worst part; it seems like Margo is the only person who notices that Vicky can’t sing or deliver her lines in anything other than an expressionless monotone. What’s going on here? Is Margo just jealous?

Then things go from horrible to weird. Margo overhears Vicky arguing with Oliver, the school photographer assigned to cover the play. And when Margo finds a silver ring in the girls’ restroom, and Oliver appears the minute she touches it, she finds out that Oliver is a little more than a high school student and a lot older than sixteen.

Now that Margo possesses the silver ring, she is the master of Oliver...until she makes her three wishes. But there is something that Oliver is not telling her - something that could be the end of him. And just when she was starting to like having him around...

Best Thang ‘Bout It: Yay; a fresh, new paranormal that I haven't seem since Aladdin. This is sheer genie-ous. (Sorry. Had to.) Having to decide on three things that you want more than anything would be one of the most difficult things, I imagine. The consequences of those actions are probably not thought through, and then it’s too late. Unless you want to un-do with another wish.

I love Oliver's story; how he became a genie and why gives his character a lot of depth.

In a previously reviewed book, the characters were also working on a musical, and it seemed to overwhelm the story with minutiae about the musical itself; that doesn’t happen here. Maybe it’s because I am familiar with the story of Sweeney Todd, but I don’t feel like I am on the outside looking in, not only trying to follow a story line, but having to understand the plot of the musical as well.

I’m Cranky Because: Margo didn’t float my boat. She was more of a conduit than anything; things happened through her. It felt like the story was pulling her along instead of the other way around. Actually, the only characters that felt three-dimensional were George, the accompanist/indie rocker and Oliver. Even the bad guy was sort-of cartoonish. And the story about her parents? It was more than a little strange.

I’ll also mention the book cover and the title...both great, but personally, I don’t think either represent what this novel is really about. Typically, I don’t re-read the synopsis of books before I start the books so that things will surprise me. The cover and the title make the story sound much lighter, like a fun romance, than what’s in the pages.

The Art of Wishing by Lindsay Ribar was published today by Dial. A free copy of this book was given to Ink and Page in return for an honest review. Big thanks to NetGalley/the Publisher/the Author.

Genre: Young Adult Fiction Fantasy Paranormal Romance
Ages: 12 and up
You Might Want to Know: Some mild profanity
Profile Image for Alexa.
Author 5 books3,204 followers
July 25, 2012
This book had me at "genies." Seriously -- genies! There's a glut of vampires, werewolves, etc. in the realm of "monster boyfriend" in paranormal romance, but genies isn't something I've seen before. I liked that not only was it an original hook, but as a reader I could latch onto the WHAT WILL SHE WISH FOR/WHAT WOULD I WISH FOR? 'wish fulfillment' aspect.

The Art of Wishing was a quick, engaging read -- I had "can't-put-it-down-itis" and finished it in less than two days (with pesky breaks for "work" and "eating" inbetween!). I love Lindsay's writing style -- she's very funny, and also is able to create vivid imagery and characterization that pops. Some things I loved, without being too spoilery:

-- that we get very little physical description of Margo, beyond what is necessary for the story (ie: we know she's kind of tomboyish, in relation to a plot point). She didn't have "Ridiculously Gorgeous Main Character" syndrome.
-- that the potential high school antagonist isn't one dimensional. She makes life a little difficult for our main character, but as the book progresses, she is fully fleshed out into a dynamic, sympathetic character.
-- that the MC's crush object is Chinese-American. Yay diversity!
-- that a major character (won't say who to avoid spoilers) is bisexual. And it's totally not a big deal.
-- that Lindsay isn't afraid to torture her characters. In a good way! I had several "OMG I WOULD DIE IF THAT HAPPENED TO ME" moments. I thought there was fantastic narrative tension -- it didn't feel like bog-standard "mid-book teen drama" stuff.
-- that the book isn't afraid to go dark. Being a genie is not all sunshine and daisies, and there are hints that book two could go to some pretty creepy places (which I like).

There's more, but it's hard to discuss without spoilers! I definitely recommend this if you like paranormal romance but perhaps are a bit petered out on vampires, etc. Or, if you *don't* like paranormal romance, but like funny contemporary YA... and are intrigued by genies.
Profile Image for J.W..
Author 14 books79 followers
September 15, 2012
I got a chance to read The Art of Wishing ahead of time, in the form of a galley. You had my attention at 'genie', but I ended up loving this book because it inverts everything I've come to expect from YA paranormal romance.

In the vaguest terms possible, to avoid spoilers:

Margo isn't defined by her relationship with Oliver-- or her relationship with any guy, for that matter. She's got her own life, her own interests, her own problems, all of which are so much at the forefront of her mind that the relationship comes almost as an afterthought. I didn't even realize how tired the whole "I love him so much I'll just die without him" bit got until I read this, and good God, it was like a breath of fresh air. That's not to say their relationship isn't powerful-- once the main characters start really getting involved with one another, they strike me as far more genuine and realistic than most of the relationships I've read in a very long time, but that's because they act like real people, and because they have genuine reasons for doing the things they do and wanting the things they want. I definitely recommend this one!
Profile Image for Imani.
497 reviews49 followers
August 16, 2015
Actual Rating: 2.5
It was okay, but I wasn't too impressed with it. I like how the author was original with using genies instead of the waaaay too common vampire or werewolf fantasy that's always overdone.

I don't really feel like talking about plot tbh. It was basic. I felt there was no depth or substance to the characters. In the beginning I thought there might be, but that fell flat during the second half of the book. :/ Not much to go on here, but it wasn't awful. *shrugs*
Profile Image for Juliana.
741 reviews1 follower
May 4, 2018
I am not a big fan of fantasy. I have to really be in the mood because it can be so heavy sometimes. This book was PERFECT for those who are easing into fantasy. It's set in the real world, all with the exception that magic and genies exist. Nobody knows they exist unless they happen upon the vessel of the genie. The book is light with a bit of romance in it and the fantasy elements are fun. You're granted three wishes and your genie can read your mind so they shape the wish to your specifications. Just don't wish them free because it's not like Aladdin at all.
I liked Margo and really liked Oliver and reading about their journey throughout was great. There was tension and edge of your seat danger that really made the book a page-turner. It's magical and there are surprises throughout. The ending is not what I expected at all and I need to immediately read the second one because I'm invested in Margo and Oliver now. We're left with unanswered questions and a couple things are thrown to the wayside but the originality of it all makes up for that. This is a good YA fantasy book that has a good balance of contemporary and fantasy.
Profile Image for Jesten.
362 reviews
May 28, 2017
Cute and extremely creative, though it did have some major instalove.
Profile Image for Stefanie Hasse hisandherbooks.de.
726 reviews225 followers
October 26, 2014
Aus nicht nachvollziehbaren Gründen hat Margo die Rolle, für die sie im Schulmusical vorgesungen hat, nicht bekommen. Das wird spätestens nach den ersten Proben klar.
Doch warum hat ausgerechnet Vicky die Rolle bekommen? Und warum sind so viele - inklusive Margos bester Freundin - regelrecht begeistert von ihr?

Als Margo einen Ring findet und plötzlich Oliver wie aus dem Nichts auftaucht, bekommt sie die Erklärung... Und nun hat Margo drei Wünsche frei, die der Dschinn ihr erfüllen wird. Stets unter Zeitdruck, denn er kann nicht lange bleiben.

Nur was passiert, wenn man sich in eine Sagengestalt verliebt?

Dschinns, Wünsche, eine Prise Romantik - diesen Reihenauftakt konnte ich mir nicht entgehen lassen und ich begann mit "Wunderbare Wünsche".
Schon fand ich mich an der Seite von Margo wieder - direkt bei ihrem Vorsingen für das Schulmusical. Margo singt für die Hauptrolle vor - doch die Rolle kriegt aus wirklich unerklärlichen Gründen ein anderes Mädchen.
Während der Proben ist stets der "Neue" an der Schule dabei: Oliver. Ein Junge, der so unscheinbar wirkt, sich stets im Hintergrund hält - und der ein großes Geheimnis birgt.

Nachdem Margo einen Ring findet, ist nichts mehr wie zuvor: Bei jeder Berührung taucht Oliver auf - und wartet, dass sie ihre drei Wünsche äußert. Doch Margo will nicht leichtfertig mit ihren Wünschen umgehen - aber je länger sie braucht, desto größer wird die Gefahr für Oliver.

Der flüssige Schreibstil von Lindsay Ribar machte es mir leicht, in die Geschichte zu tauchen. Die Autorin gab mir viel Zeit, die Protagonistin Margo kennenzulernen. Ihre Liebe zur Musik, ihr großes Talent - und ihre Unfähigkeit, eigene Songs zu schreiben.
Letzteres könnte sich mit einem Schlag ändern - wenn sie ihren Wunsch nutzen würde... Doch selbst der bestbeabsichtigte Wunsch kann eine Kette von Ereignissen auslösen und muss gut durchdacht werden - Zeit, in der sich Oliver und Margo näher kommen - Zeit, die Oliver nicht hat.
Die Ereignisse überschlagen sich und plötzlich sieht sich Margo mit einer Gefahr konfrontiert, die sie nicht einmal zu träumen gewagt hätte.

Die Idee der Autorin hatte mir bereits in der Inhaltsangabe gefallen und mit der Umsetzung hat mich Lindsay Ribar überzeugt. Die Dschinns nicht an Flaschen, sondern Gegenstände zu binden ebenso wie die zunächst unbekannte Bedrohung.
Auch der Humor ist nicht zu kurz gekommen, denn zahlreiche Dialoge lockern die Ich-Perspektive aus der Sicht von Margo auf. Dennoch kamen ihre Gefühle kaum bei mir an. Es kribbelte ab und an, aber nicht mehr.
Großer Kritikpunkt war, dass trotz dieses magischen Szenarios der unfantastische Anteil - zumindest gefühlt - überwog. Beziehungen, Hintergründe, Wünsche und ihre Folgen. Dazwischen eingeflochten die Entwicklung der Emotionen zwischen Margo und Oliver.

Erst gen Showdown lässt die Autorin die Bedrohung stark ansteigen, in den letzten Kapiteln -und die Spannung gleich mit. Das Ende kam dann beinahe zu schnell und nach Abschluss kann ich nur sagen, dass ich gespannt bin, wie es weitergeht, zumal ich bereits um die Bedeutung des "4. Wunsches" - dem Originaltitel der Fortsetzung - weiß. Ich bin gespannt.

"Wunderbare Wünsche" besticht durch die Musik und die Entwicklung von Beziehungen. Für meinen Geschmack war die Story trotz des übernatürlichen Grundgedankens zu "unfantastisch". Die interessante Idee rund um die Dschinn hat mir jedoch sehr gut gefallen. Sehr gute 3 Bücher für Margo, Oliver und drei besondere Wünsche.

Eine klare Empfehlung für Contemporary-Leser, die einem Hauch Fantasy nicht abgeneigt sind. Euch kann Margo sicher noch mehr überzeugen.

Die Reihe:
1. Wunderbare Wünsche
2. Originaltitel: The Fourth Wish

Profile Image for kari.
848 reviews
September 8, 2015
I picked this up and didn't look it up on GR before reading. I had intended to give this book a five, solid five . . . until I read the afterword in which the author says special thanks to someone for "that one Inccredibly Frustrating Comment, which instantly turned this story from a stand-alone into a trilogy."
So, I am left disappointed.
I liked this book from the start. Tight writing, fast-moving plot, lots of action, super-natural rules make sense. All in all a fun read.
Except it should have been wrapped up in one book. When there were only ten pages to go I started to wonder how she was going to pull all the threads together, but I held out hope that it would happen.
So, again, I'm disappointed.
The character of Margo is intelligent, level-headed and not one to take chances or break out of her careful existence. Then, along come Oliver, a genie, and within a short time, everything is changing. I liked how she changed and the development of their friendship/relationship. This isn't insta-love which is refreshing.
This is a page-turner that hooks you in and the pace picks up as the story goes along. It is very well-done.
Still, I'm disappointed.
I wanted to enjoy this one book, get the full story of these two and in the future see what else this author might have to offer as I very much enjoyed her writing. If it follows what seems to be the YA paranormal arc these days, then Margo and Oliver will for whatever reason be separated in the next book,, and the third book will be their reunion and final resolution. I hope I'm wrong, but that seems to be the basic formula and from this ending I can't see any way that this won't be happening.
So, were this one solitary book and if I didn't now know how it all ends, it would definitely be rated higher, but since it isn't and I do, sorry, but it gets a three.
If the entire series ends up showing me something new and different and I can see why it needed to be stretched out to three books instead of one, then I will gladly return later and update this review.
edit: Having read "the rest of the story" I no longer recommend any of it. And my review is changing accordingly. What a mess.
Profile Image for Shana.
66 reviews3 followers
June 28, 2012
I was fortunate enough to read an advance copy of The Art of Wishing and I can confirm, it's absolutely delightful and witty with charming characters. Lindsay smoothly brings a fantastical creature, a genie, into our modern culture, without denying the history (Disney and otherwise) that came before.

Margo is the kind of character we all want to know in real life. So often characters in paranormal fantasy are put on a pedestal of perfection. They are selfless and always do what's right. Margo's a good kid! She wants to help Oliver out, but three wishes are three wishes... What distinguishes her from the rest of us is that she wants them to be good wishes, wishes that really matter. And Oliver.. Oliver is the kind of guy every high school girl wants to meet. He doesn't fall for Margo because of her simpering good looks, but rather because he found her interesting and intriguing. He wanted to know her. It wasn't fate or destiny of a fantastical nature that brought them together. It's good old-fashioned chemistry.

Lindsay also surrounds Margo and Oliver with a great and well-rounded supporting cast. The villain is scary and dangerous, but not over the top. And the integration of the paranormal romance with high school works out well. Margo's life is turned upside down, but she's still in high school.

Finishing the book, I felt satisfied by the conclusion (rare in YA trilogies!), but eager for book #2. Get on it, Lindsay! What about Sweeney Todd??
511 reviews210 followers
July 7, 2013
Did I even tell you guys how awesome this book truly is? No? My bad. This is a perfectly molded pot of colorful cookies you are not likely to find at the end of a rainbow. Makes me want to grow a fu manchu or handlebar mustache so I can twirl it. I don't know what else to say. It's different, it's unexpected it's fun and I LOOOOOOOOOVEEEEEE the ending plus what comes before.

I feel the urge to stuff my face, and yours, in it, just for the giggles and happy-feels it gave me.

I know, real helpful.
Profile Image for J.J. Howard.
Author 10 books177 followers
April 23, 2013
Such an enjoyable read! This book is also my book's twin because of Neko Case and waffles. In all seriousness, I loved these characters, and I did not expect that ending (in a good way). The acknowledgements said something about a sequel: I'm in.
Profile Image for Meg.
209 reviews348 followers
June 23, 2014
I am the worst GR flake ever. I read this awhile back and it is so, so cute. Margot is sassy and awesome, Oliver is adorable and almost unbearably sweet. Bonus points for fabulous banter. The Art of Wishing lures you in with laughter and then kicks you right in the feels.
Profile Image for Peggy.
Author 3 books136 followers
July 22, 2014
This book had great voice, a fun premise, and really likeable characters. I had so much fun reading it!
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