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Title of book:The Golem and the Jinni by Helene Wecker
Reason for reading: This was a book displayed for a while in my favorite bookstore under a few different sections, like “Notable New Authors” or “New Fiction.” It caught my eye initially for the beautiful cover (it’s a gorgeous blue-and-gold), and because the edges of the pages are blue. I’ve read a few books in between the time that I added this one to my “to read” list and now, but I kept thinking about this novel and usually try to go with my heart when it comes to choosing a book to read.
First impressions: Like I said, the cover and the book itself are very pretty. I am reading the Nook version so I don’t get to enjoy the blue page edges of the actual novel, but the cover is blue with a picture of the Washington Arch in New York City in the snow.
Previous reads by this author: None.
Hardcover, paperback, or ebook: Nook book
GoodReads rating: 4.16 average
First sentences:The Golem’s life began in the hold of a steamship. The year was 1899; the ship was the Baltika, crossing from Danzig to New York. The Golem’s master, a man named Otto Rotfeld, had smuggled her aboard in a crate and hidden her among the luggage.
I truly enjoyed this book, which surprised me, because I don’t usually gravitate towards non-fiction let alone love it. Because my generation unfortunately did not get to enjoy Julia Child as much as some of us would have liked— by the time I was able to appreciate her she was already moving out of the public eye— I had to discover her through other mediums. My first true encounter was the movie “Julie & Julia,” after which I read the book, after which I read Julia’s memoirs that she had written with her nephew (“My Life in France”). She instantly became a personal hero of mine. This biography did nothing but raise my level of respect and admiration of her and the way she lived her life. She plunged headlong into everything she came across with all she had, leaving no room for hesitancies or regret, and approached her life with the same attitude as she approached her cooking: “Apologize for nothing.” Although I found it hard to agree with all her political stances I admire the way she stood behind her beliefs and refused to be apologetic or quiet about things on which she had strong opinions. The book made me cry (her love story with her husband, Paul, is beautiful and moving), laugh (her sense of humor was quick and wicked), and ultimately feel as if I knew Julia myself after I finished the book. I am left overall with a sense of loss that I never had the chance to watch her on television while she was alive, and a sudden desire to try my hand at French cooking.
I gave this book five out of five stars. Bon appetit!