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Literature / Scream of the Evil Genie

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Scream of the Evil Genie is the thirteenth book in the Give Yourself Goosebumps Choose Your Own Adventure series based on R.L Stine's Goosebumps series.

When you get home from school, you open a can of soda, and out comes a genie named Jenna, who grants you three wishes. What do you wish for? Riches? Beauty? Fame and Fortune? Whatever it is, better be careful, because if you don't word it right, it might ruin your life!


This book provides examples of:

  • Amazingly Embarrassing Parents: Your character's mother, who calls you "smoochykins" as soon as she gets back home. The embarrassment she gave you indirectly leads to one of the storylines — as you offhandedly said to Jenna, "I wish you're my mom."...
  • And I Must Scream: Wishing to be so beautiful that people stop and stare results in you being turned into a beautiful painting, but still alive and aware of everything. You can't undo this wish, as you can't speak, so you have to stay like this forever.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: If you get trapped on an island in Scream of the Evil Genie, a parrot arrives to help you find your way back.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: An ongoing theme throughout the book — sometimes, it causes minor difficulties, but you're able to correct them without much difficulty. Often though, your less thoughtful wishes spark off some really bad things happening, including wishing you were "anywhere but here" and getting stranded on an island, accidentally transporting a monster into your house, wishing you could experience the video game you're playing in real life, and being transported into the game (you weren't even trying to make a wish that time) and wishing you were beautiful and becoming a beautiful painting.
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  • Becoming the Genie: One of the endings involves Jenna getting your final wish, and using it to make the two of you switch places.
  • Circling Vultures: Referenced, as the ending where you burn to a crisp in the hot sun while waiting in the sea, tells you to close the book "before the buzzards start circling!"
  • Covers Always Lie: The cover shows Jenna materializing outdoors in an alleyway, but in the book itself you released Jenna from a fridge in your house.
  • Exact Words: Jenna had a tendency to screw you over by twisting your wish. Want to stay beautiful forever? She turns you into a painting. Want to be famous? She'll turn you into the main star of a Barney and Friends-like TV show which you loathe. Randomly commenting that you wish your brother to "shut his mouth"? Jenna then removes his mouth permanently. Wish you never met Jenna? She transports you to a time before you meet her... 80 years ago.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: One of the first things Jenna says is that she will never grant any wishes to kill anyone.
  • Freeing the Genie: A variation; in one of the endings you wish that Jenna wasn't a genie anymore, resulting in everything returning to normal.
  • Giant Foot of Stomping: The Golden Ending have you trying to steal Jenna's ring - after Jenna had grown kaiju-sized - in order to cast your final wish and turn everything back to normal. Unfortunately, you risk getting stepped on by Jenna in the process.
  • Incredible Shrinking Man: Yeah, the ending where you accidentally wished for Jenna to be your mother? Jenna then swaps position with your mom by shrinking her, and imprisoning her in the coke can, which you found out late in the story.
  • Jackass Genie: Jenna. There's only one wish that works out exactly how you expected — and even then, it took an extra wish to correct it — but the other ones turn out to be worse, whether by a little or a lot.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: Refusing to follow a talking parrot results in the book pointing out that a fan of the series would have known that the parrot was obviously important, and would have helped in someway (but offers you a pass if you're new to the series.)
  • Make My Monster Grow: The one good storyline with you trying to cast your final wish to turn everything back to normal involves you trying to steal Jenna's magic ring. Unfortunately, Jenna had transformed into a kaiju-sized human at that point.
  • Never Trust a Title: The book doesn't actually feature an evil genie; Jenna, the titular genie, is more of a Jerkass who's just fed up with having to grant people's wishes. In the endings where she directly does something bad to you, it's less out of malice than because she's desperate to be free. She even warns you in advance that she's unable to grant wishes for the death or injury of someone else.
  • Not So Stoic: In the one storyline where you accidentally wished Jenna to be your mother, you decide to destroy Jenna's coke can to undo everything she had done. At which point the usually-stoic Jenna starts breaking down and cry, and begs you to NOT destroy the can.
  • Now What?: An ambiguous ending from the second storyline have you realizing your mother is trapped in Jenna's coke can after your off-handed wish about wanting Jenna to be your mother. You then destroy the coke can, killing Jenna in the process, and successfully releasing your mother... only she's now five inches tall, nagging you for starting this whole mess, and blaming your brother for starting a rock party in the house. The book then stops right there.
  • Our Genies Are Different: Where to start? Jenna being a genie who resides in a coke can? And dresses like a punk rocker?
  • Plug 'n' Play Friends: Or Parent, in this case. One of the wishes you can make is to have the eponymous genie Jenna be your mom instead of your real mom... after having known her for all of a half hour.
  • Rat Man: The scenario where you accidentally wished yourself and a friend into a video game have you battling a "Four Armed Ninja Rat-Man" to escape. Cool when it's part of a video game, not so cool when you're fighting for your life.
  • Shopping Montage: The storyline where you wished yourself to be a millionaire have you and a friend going on a shopping binge, which lasts for three pages.
  • Supernatural Is Green: Along with Supernatural Is Purple. The cover shows Jenna immerging from the soda in a stream of green and purple. An interesting case where you see both mixed together.
  • Three Wishes: You are given three wishes by Jenna, and how you use them depends on the path you take. One good ending involves you wishing for unlimited wishes, which Jenna reluctantly grants, subverting this.
  • Trapped in TV Land: One of the routes have you inviting a Tomboy friend over for a video game session. But in a moment of impulse, you're so absorbed in the game that you randomly grabs a can of soda and said "you wish you're in the game as well"... guess which Cola can you picked.
  • Win to Exit: The above scenario where you accidentally transports yourself and a friend into a video game have you trying to find a way out by beating the last level.
  • Wishing for More Wishes: One good ending has the reader try this. It works.
  • Wrong Genre Savvy: At one point, you are stranded on an island when a parrot appears and you then have the choice of whether or not to follow it. If you figure that a parrot has to be bad news, the book complains about your ingratitude and says that if you've read the series before, you should have known the parrot was trying to help you. You're allowed to continue only if you say this is your first Give Yourself Goosebumps book.

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