I bought this e-book on sale last year and after failed attempts to read Lirael (I know it’s a great book, but it seems I picked it up at the wrong time, I plan to get back at it later on), looking at the books I already have on my Kindle I found The Golem and the Jinni by Helene Wecker.
Chava is a golem, a creature made of clay, brought to life by a disgraced rabbi who dabbles in dark Kabbalistic magic. When her master, the husband who commissioned her, dies at sea on the voyage from Poland, she is unmoored and adrift as the ship arrives in New York in 1899.
Ahmad is a jinni, a being of fire, born in the ancient Syrian desert. Trapped in an old copper flask by a Bedouin wizard centuries ago, he is released accidentally by a tinsmith in a Lower Manhattan shop. Though he is no longer imprisoned, Ahmad is not entirely free – an unbreakable band of iron binds him to the physical world.
The Golem and the Jinni is their magical, unforgettable story; unlikely friends whose tenuous attachment challenges their opposing natures – until the night a terrifying incident drives them back into their separate worlds. But a powerful threat will soon bring Chava and Ahmad together again, challenging their existence and forcing them to make a fateful choice.
The details in this book were impeccable. I read somewhere that it took the author nearly 7 years to write this book. I would say that the amount of research done is clearly shown in her writing, the author described the various cultures referenced in this book clearly and based on many reviews I’ve read they were also described accurately.
The first half of this character driven book was a little bit slow but not to the point where you would lose interest. It focused on introducing the characters — at first I thought I would get lost with all the characters and who they are, but I didn’t— they were all clearly defined and interesting. After getting familiar with the main story line and characters the book starts to pick up pace and by the last 25% I couldn’t let it go.
Without giving any spoilers away I just want to say I loved the ending. It was perfect. Even though the book has violence, sadness and action, it left a peaceful feeling that resonated with me for a while after finishing it — I need to find more books like that.
I highly recommend checking this book out, the author announced that a sequel to the book could be out by 2018 so I look forward to that.