Forced to obey her master.
Compelled to help her enemy.
Determined to free herself.
Nalia is a jinni of tremendous ancient power, the only survivor of a coup that killed nearly everyone she loved. Stuffed into a bottle and sold by a slave trader, she’s now in hiding on the dark caravan, the lucrative jinni slave trade between Arjinna and Earth, where jinn are forced to grant wishes and obey their human masters’ every command. She’d give almost anything to be free of the golden shackles that bind her to Malek, her handsome, cruel master, and his lavish Hollywood lifestyle.
Enter Raif, the enigmatic leader of Arjinna’s revolution and Nalia’s sworn enemy. He promises to free Nalia from her master so that she can return to her ravaged homeland and free her imprisoned brother—all for an unbearably high price. Nalia’s not sure she can trust him, but Raif’s her only hope of escape. With her enemies on the hunt, Earth has become more perilous than ever for Nalia. There’s just one catch: for Raif’s unbinding magic to work, Nalia must gain possession of her bottle…and convince the dangerously persuasive Malek that she truly loves him. Battling a dark past and harboring a terrible secret, Nalia soon realizes her freedom may come at a price too terrible to pay: but how far is she willing to go for it?
Inspired by Arabian Nights, EXQUISITE CAPTIVE brings to life a deliciously seductive world where a wish can be a curse and shadows are sometimes safer than the light.
This book put me in a unique situation. I had heard really good things from book blogger friends of mine, so I went into it with high expectations. When I started this book, it seemed only okay. As the book continued, it was still pretty blah. But the last 30% of the book? It was phenomenal! If I could simply review the last part of the book, I would give it a high rating. But since I have to include the beginning and middle, my overall opinion of the book is lower.
The main character was Nalia, the lone Ghan Aisouri jinn survivor. The rest of her family, other than her brother, was killed many years ago during the jinn uprising. In the past, she was a princess, but now she is a slave, as shown by the bracelets on her wrist that bind her to Malik, her master. Malik was a human who bought her because he heard that she was able to grant extremely powerful wishes. He was very cunning and cruel, yet every now and then he would have a soft side, but it would last for only a moment or two. His personality changed frequently, and it was a bit annoying. One day, a serf jinn, Raif, tried to kill Nalia, or so she thought….but in reality he actually was there because he wanted to free her, but for a price. He wanted something that only Nalia could get. As the book continued, Nalia interacted with both Malik and Raif, and a twisted love triangle developed. I normally don’t mind love triangles, but to be honest, I really didn’t “ship” Nalia with either of them.
One of the reasons why I thought that the majority of this book was boring, or simply okay at best, was because of the characters. Sure, I connected with some of the characters, but I never felt deeply connected. Also, they rarely did something unexpected, or surprised me with their emotions. Nalia was an okay main character, but nothing special. I didn’t connect with her easily because her thoughts were all over the place. I couldn’t tell what her motivation for doing anything was, other than trying to save her brother. She wanted to be free of Malik, her master, but yet she also felt happy with him at times. Seriously, just make up your mind already!!! The only characters that I really liked were secondary characters. I really liked Leilan, who was Nalia’s jinn friend, yet never knew Nalia’s secret. Also, I liked Zanari, the sister of Raif, but she was introduced very late in the book.
I did like the world-building, and thought that the concept of slave jinn’s was very interesting. I also loved the end, but I can’t tell you what happened, because that would be a huge spoiler. Overall, the world-building and end of Exquisite Captive saved the book for me, and so I will give it 3.5 stars.