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The Golem and the Jinni Audiobook

The Golem and the Jinni: A Novel

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Audible Editor Reviews

Editors Select, April 2013 - The Golem and the Jinni delivers the glimpses into the past that make historical fiction so satisfying, combined with the power of well-told fantasy. New York at the dawn of the 20th century is a city teeming with life as newly-arrived immigrants find their footing in an unfamiliar land. This cultural melting pot is manifested in the story's two titular characters: the golem, a figure from Jewish myth, and the jinni, a spirit from Arabian folklore. The two creatures - normally bidden to serve human masters -find themselves unmoored by circumstances and with no one to serve. Their chance meeting begets an unforgettable journey through the lovingly-crafted city, and provides an outsider's perspective on both the mundane and transcendent in the human experience. Even if fantasy isn't normally in your wheelhouse, this incredible premise – paired with George Guidall’s performance - is sure to deliver. —Michael, Audible Editor

Publisher's Summary

Audie Award Finalist, Fiction, 2014

Helene Wecker's dazzling debut novel tells the story of two supernatural creatures who appear mysteriously in 1899 New York. Chava is a golem, a creature made of clay, brought to life by a strange man who dabbles in dark Kabbalistic magic. When her master dies at sea on the voyage from Poland, she is unmoored and adrift as the ship arrives in New York Harbor. 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.

Struggling to make their way in this strange new place, the Golem and the Jinni try to fit in with their neighbors while masking their true natures. Surrounding them is a community of immigrants: the coffeehouse owner Maryam Faddoul, a pillar of wisdom and support for her Syrian neighbors; the solitary ice cream maker Saleh, a damaged man cursed by tragedy; the kind and caring Rabbi Meyer and his beleaguered nephew, Michael, whose Sheltering House receives newly arrived Jewish men; the adventurous young socialite Sophia Winston; and the enigmatic Joseph Schall, a dangerous man driven by ferocious ambition and esoteric wisdom.

Meeting by chance, the two creatures become 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 menace will soon bring the Golem and the Jinni together again, threatening their existence and forcing them to make a fateful choice.

Marvelous and compulsively listenable, The Golem and the Jinni weaves strands of folk mythology, historical fiction, and magical fable into a wondrously inventive and unforgettable tale.

©2013 Helene Wecker (P)2013 HarperCollins Publishers

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

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Performance
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  •  
    raymond springer 08-02-16
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    "I didn't want it to end"

    Incredible! One to add to my list of ALL TIME favorites! Brilliant! The acting was flawless! Every character came to life with ease. I was transformed into another place and time from the first chapter and all the way through. A classic

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Yousra 08-01-16
    Yousra 08-01-16 Member Since 2013
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    "Delightful Mix of ancient and modern fantasy"

    As a native Arabic speaker, I appreciate the honest effort that was put into researching this delicate piece of work, it made me forgive the few unintentional errors the author made. I could hear the echoes of the Arabian nights fairy tales in the author's story yet she managed to give it a modern voice, I could almost imagine her painstakingly weaving her tale through times and places. It made for an amazing story of unforgettable characters. As soon as I finished it I felt like starting over...

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jill Graves Pflugerville, TX United States 07-31-16
    Jill Graves Pflugerville, TX United States 07-31-16 Member Since 2014
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    "Wonderful listen"
    Where does The Golem and the Jinni rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    This has to be one of my favorite stories. It pulls two divergent characters together in a way that is both interesting and fun to read.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    I really think each character contributed to the depth of the story and altering or removing anyone would have had disastrous effects on the whole plot. Everyone was well thought out and had a lot of depth.


    Which character – as performed by George Guidall – was your favorite?

    For me that would really be hard to say, each character was special.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John 07-28-16
    John 07-28-16 Member Since 2011
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    "An entertaining tale of magic and life"

    The Golem and the Jinni combines an entertaining story about magical creatures with real people. The story shows the good and the bad in each character. It is a study of love and life and death in the city and in the desert.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Brad Parks Brooklyn, NY 07-24-16
    Brad Parks Brooklyn, NY 07-24-16 Member Since 2015

    writer, singer, bon vivant

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    "Wonderful, Marvelous, Beautiful"

    This is one of the best books I have read in a long time. As a writer, I have to marvel at the depth of the characterization and the easy beauty of the writing. The story carried me along joyfully through each side story and gratifyingly brought all the threads together at the end. I deeply love this book.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bluebird 07-22-16
    Bluebird 07-22-16
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    "Loved it. "

    Tried to hold off listening so it wouldn't be over. Great narrator! Fell in love with the characters.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    R. Hazelman West Milford, NJ United States 07-08-16
    R. Hazelman West Milford, NJ United States 07-08-16 Member Since 2011
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    "Heartbroken that this ended"

    I'm so happy I found this book bit so sad that I finished it. Ughh! The story was so engaging, blending both historically realistic NYC setting and Syria from a millennium ago and magical elements of the Golem's creation and Jinni's existence. I think I'm addicted. As I have experience with both Eastern European Jewry and friends of Syrian branch of Catholicism, I definitely saw that the author was faithful to both.

    I was also very pleased with the narrator - he managed the clipped tones of the Jinni and tenor of the Golem to perfection, not to mention the myriad of other characters with their distinct voices. Will seek out more work by both, the author and narrator.

    Bravo!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    i love amazon 07-06-16
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    "Awesome story!!"

    Great adventure! Interesting story! Engaging performance by the narrator! Will be looking forward to more books by this author!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gavin 07-02-16
    Gavin 07-02-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Stupendous all the way through."

    I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys even the slightest bit of fiction! Helene Wecker creates a marvelous depiction of several different cultures of the world, and the characters are wonderful - endearing characters are lovable and have you genuinely cheering for them, and antagonists are just the right amount of believably malicious.

    This is all aided by Guidall's masterful performance, with varying, unique voices for the many characters. My only possible complaint would be that since a tiny bit of the prose is either vintage English (e.g. "hansom" used to describe a horse-drawn carriage) or of Hebrew/Syrian origin, there were a few times where I had to rewind and listen closely to pick out the phonetics of a word in order to look it up.

    But this is not a real critique - the authentic language really does add more to the book than it takes away. I suppose the perfect scenario would be to have both the paper book and audio book, with Guidall's fantastic voice narrating as you read along.

    Audiobooks don't get much better than this. For all 20+ hours, I was continually pulled in to the book's world by both the story and the narration. I'm not one to often write reviews, but this work absolutely earned 5 stars across the board.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Sheryl 07-01-16
    Sheryl 07-01-16 Member Since 2015
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    "Fascinating story! Could not put down!"

    I loved everything about this book. I usually listen while working out but I couldn't put it down and didn't want it to end. The narration was awesome of course. Mr. Guidall's manipulation of his voice to fit the different characters is amazing.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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