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After long hiatus, author Helene Wecker resurrects fans’ beloved Golem and Jinni

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Eight years after they first bewitched us, Ahmad the jinni and Chava the golem are finally back.

To the delight of fans of 2013’s bestselling historical fantasy “The Golem and The Jinni,” author Helene Wecker has penned a sequel titled, “The Hidden Palace.” Picking up where the first installment left off at the waning of 19th century, the new page turner spans the first 15 years of the 20th century. Although the Jewish Golem and Arabian Jinni themselves never age, time nonetheless ticks on and they must adapt to the quickly modernizing and tumultuous age.

In a recent conversation with The Times of Israel from her home in northern California, Wecker acknowledged her fans’ long wait for the sequel.

“The first book’s reception was wonderful and everything I could have hoped for. To be honest, it was a little overwhelming, and daunting to be given the opportunity to write another book,” Wecker said.

“I knew I had to hit the bar I had already set. Maybe I psyched myself out. It took so long to write this book because I couldn’t phone it in,” she said.

“The Golem and The Jinni” was about two mythical creatures from different historical eras, parts of the world and ethnic traditions arriving separately (the Golem by ship and the Jinni by copper flask) in New York in 1899. Eventually, the Golem from 19th century Poland and the Jinni from Ancient Syria accidentally meet one another. They bond and then separate after a terrifying incident, only to later reunite to fight a power bent on destroying them both. (The author’s Jewish identity and her husband’s Syrian Muslim descent inspired the original notion of a golem and jinni meeting.)

In “The Hidden Palace” Ahmad and Chava become further enmeshed in the human........

© The Times of Israel

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