Book Review: Golem and the Jinni

The Golem and the Jinni by Helene Wecker is a brilliant fantasy historical fiction novel published in 2013. It is a tale about new beginnings, the wonders of life and old New York City.

A golem is created by Yehudah Schaalman for Otto Rotfeld. He seeks a submissive wife and turns to the supernatural for one. His requests lead to a golem that is curious and she has to learn how to survive on her own as she ends up in New York City.

In Little Syria New York City, a jinni has been freed from a flask that he was trapped in for centuries. Ahmad tries to recover his memories as he walks around Manhattan at night. Also in the city, Schaalman has followed the golem and seeks immortality and will go to any lengths to accomplish that.

Exploring old New York City from the viewpoint of someone who was just created into existence and someone who has been locked up in a flask for centuries is a delight. Wecker does a great job painting Manhattan vividly and shows us the viewpoints of an immigrant that just arrived. Her characters are good and the plot is also great. She makes everything connect while also showing us the greatest city in the world.

I have read this book twice and plan to read it again down the line. Books about jinni’s and golems are interesting reads and Wecker is also a great storyteller. A sequel is supposed to be released but no idea when but I will be looking out for that. I recommend this book if you like magic and fantasy.

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