Friday, August 11, 2017

Exquisite Captive

Exquisite Captive 
by Heather Demetrios
Balzer + Bray 2014, 463 pgs, Young Adult Fiction

Nalia, a young jinni of a powerful and ancient ruling class, is the sole survivor of a violent coup in her homeland of Arjinna. Surviving as a slave on the Dark Caravan, she must obey every command of her master, Malek, until he makes three wishes. However Malek believes he is in love with Nalia and will never make his third wish. Enter Raif, the enigmatic leader of the rebellion. War against the new rulers of Arjinna is not going well and he believes Nalia can make the difference. Raif can break the slave bond magic, but freeing Nalia from Malek proves to be more difficult that either she or Raif had imagined.

I loved this story! The writing is good, and the story is complex and engaging. The characters have depth and faults, and experience a realistic range of emotions. I especially like the emotional maturity displayed by Nalia. Even though she is haunted by past actions that proved to have severe consequences, she still demonstrates strength in dealing with the problems of the present. I also appreciated how the magic was set up. The jinn use element-related magic that varies in strength depending on the race of the jinni, and wishes have binding qualities that aren’t fully understood by most. I would recommend this book to someone interested in a complex story, or a book with magic in a modern setting.


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