If you loved reading The Henna Artist by International Bestselling Author Alka Joshi, you’ll enjoy book 2 in The Jaipur Trilogy, The Secret Keeper of Jaipur! My love and review for The Henna Artist is just a click away too!
If you’d like to sample more of my favorite reads by diverse authors, hop on over to Sea Prayer to Kites, Mountains and 1000 Splendid Suns, books by International Bestseller, Khaled Hosseini and The Woman In The White Kimono by Ana Johns.
Here’s a fun 3-part interview with Alka Joshi!!
STORY MANTRA with ALKA JOSHI!!!
I could gush on and on about all the rave reviews The Henna Artist and The Secret Keeper of Jaipur, books 1 and 2, in the Jaipur Trilogy have received, and the Reese’s book picks and adaptation by Miramax to a TV series ahead, but I’ll leave that for you to read about instead at Variety and Kirkus Reviews!
The Secret Keeper of Jaipur leaps from central character Lakshmi Kumar, formerly a henna artist in book 1, to her role in book 2 as a director of The Healing Garden. Her disciple, Malik Abbas, previously a smart street-urchin who secured his position as Lakshmi’s assistant in book 1, now takes center-stage. Malik is a graduate of the prestigious Bishop Cotton School, Simla, travels to Jaipur and is engaged in his first work assignment. Lakshmi serves the community of Simla and finds herself caretaker to Malik’s love Nimmi and her two children.
A woman from the lower, uneducated tribal class, Nimmi loves Malik but is cautious at how Malik looks up to Lakshmi for approval and continued support. And therein lines one of the many conflicts. Lakshmi was the hero of her story in book 1. Malik is the hero of book 2 and both central characters’ worlds collide with Nimmi.
As if that isn’t enough, a catastrophic event in Jaipur—the collapse of a cinema hall—paves the path for all the characters and aristocratic cream of society from The Henna Artist to flood center stage. Investigations, secrets and revelations perfume the air. The Maharani, Dowager Queen and even Madho Singh the parrot flutter in whisking the best of Jaipur royalty. No one can solve the crime—except Malik whose gift of street-wise and street-smart make him a sassy know-it-all who doesn’t show-it-all.
Set in the foothills of the Himalayas, my love for Lakshmi’s character only strengthened. This woman of courage and confidence, now married to Dr. Jay Kumar, serves a cause greater than the henna artist of her former years. Laskhmi now cures the sick and heals more than physical pain. Lakshmi takes Nimmi under her wing, bites back the trepidation of animosity Nimmi harbors against her because nothing is greater for Lakshmi than protecting those she loves. Even if that means putting her own life at risk.
Malik has come a long way from serving as Lakshmi’s assistant. A young man who can handle a national calamity with the ease of a tumbler of scotch, Malik pursues the structural cinema hall collapse one brick at a time and with Lakshmi’s help puts together the pieces of the riddle. The duo also hold onto secrets which must remain hidden like those of an adopted child, Laskhmi’s hidden lust and lost loves of her former years and Dr. Jay Kumar’s incidental fling with Nimmi in a twist of fate that saves their lives but catapults potential disgrace.
The Secret Keeper of Jaipur is a story that rolls with the hills of Simla from page to page until The End—in the wait for book 3 and a new beginning! And a Netflix TV series to come soon!
What fictional book or series did you love that propelled you to the next?