Saturday, April 01, 2017

Five top books that tell the monster’s story

Ruthanna Emrys's new novel is Winter Tide. One of her five favorite books that tell the monster’s story, as shared at
The Golem and the Jinni, by Helene Wecker

Immigrants come to the US and try to fit in—learn the language, get a job, find friends. Wecker’s protagonists are no different, except that they happen to be a fire elemental locked in human form by unknown magic, and a golem whose master died shortly after awakening her in the middle of the Atlantic. Ahmad is arrogant and impetuous, a monster because of his confident lack of concern with others’ needs. Chava is made to put others’ needs first, but still a monster because—as everyone knows—all golems eventually run mad and use their inhuman strength to rend and kill until they’re stopped.

Together, they don’t fight crime (mostly), but they do help each other resolve the mysteries behind their respective creations. They compliment each others’ strengths and monstrous natures. Chava teaches Ahmad how to take care of people beyond himself, and Ahmad helps Chava learn to value herself. They give each other the thing Frankenstein’s monster never had, and together find a place in the world and a community where they can survive.
Read about another entry on the list.

The Golem and the Jinni is among Tara Sonin's five sexy novels to unleash your wanderlust, Francis Spufford's ten top New York novels, seven recommended books for Game of Thrones fans, and Chris Bohjalian's twenty notable books about troubled romances.

The Page 69 Test: The Golem and the Jinni.

--Marshal Zeringue