The Hidden Palace: A Novel of the Golem and the Jinni
July 22, 2021 10:27 AM - by Wecker, Helene - Subscribe

Chava is a golem, a woman made of clay, who can hear the thoughts and longings of those around her and feels compelled by her nature to help them. Ahmad is a jinni, a restless creature of fire, once free to roam the desert but now imprisoned in the shape of a man. Fearing they’ll be exposed as monsters, these magical beings hide their true selves and try to pass as human—just two more immigrants in the bustling world of 1900s Manhattan. Brought together under calamitous circumstances, their lives are now entwined—but they’re not yet certain of what they mean to each other.

Both Chava and Ahmad have changed the lives of the people around them. Park Avenue heiress Sophia Winston, whose brief encounter with Ahmad left her with a strange illness that makes her shiver with cold, travels to the Middle East to seek a cure. There she meets Dima, a tempestuous female jinni who’s been banished from her tribe. Back in New York, in a tenement on the Lower East Side, a little girl named Kreindel helps her rabbi father build a golem they name Yossele—not knowing that she’s about to be sent to an orphanage uptown, where the hulking Yossele will become her only friend and protector.

Spanning the tumultuous years from the turn of the twentieth century to the beginning of World War I, The Hidden Palace follows these lives and others as they collide and interleave. Can Chava and Ahmad find their places in the human world while remaining true to each other? Or will their opposing natures and desires eventually tear them apart—especially once they encounter, thrillingly, other beings like themselves?
posted by DowBits (5 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
I think this is a sequel to The Golem and The Jinni?
posted by Chrysopoeia at 3:55 PM on July 22, 2021

It is indeed, starting shortly before the epilogue of the first book!
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 7:19 PM on July 22, 2021

Oh, wow, I didn’t know there was a sequel in the works—and now out! Cool.
posted by Don.Kinsayder at 7:02 PM on July 23, 2021

I finished this over the weekend, and it's great. I love it just as much as the first one. It felt like it maybe meandered a bit in the middle, but I was extremely satisfied with how everything comes together in the end. Beautiful story, she's such a great writer and I would LOVE to see a third book.
posted by ssmith at 3:03 PM on July 28, 2021

I missed a few characters from the first book and was surprised she didnt include them. Like Matthew, the little boy who was so close with Ahmed. It seemed like Toby took the role that should have been his.
posted by silverstatue at 6:25 PM on August 22, 2021

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