The Henna Artist | Alka Joshi | Book Review

Author- Alka Joshi

Genre- Fiction

Page Length- 368

Format- Paperback

The Henna Artist is so much more than the story of a 15-year-old girl (Lakshmi) forced into an arrange marriage because her parents could not bear to fill three stomachs. It talks about the sufferings of people during the 1950s, child marriage, domestic violence, disrespecting females, how females were seen as children producing machines by some people, caste system, royal families etc.

The protagonist of the book is Lakshmi, who is a Henna Artist and works for various high class women to fulfill her dream of bringing her parents to Jaipur and apologizing for whatever they had to go through because of her running and leaving her husband years ago. My favorite character is Malik. I loved how he always supported and encouraged Lakshmi, understood her and stood by her side always.

I can talk about each and every character in detail, that is how much I have loved the book. But I won’t because I want you to read it and find out your own favorite character. I want you to imagine Samir smoking, Hari coming back to Lakshmi’s life, Lakshmi’s reaction after getting to know about Radha and enjoy each and everything about this book like I did.

Such a great debut novel. The writing style is so good that it keeps you hooked from the start. Not even at a single point of time the book felt like a debut. I would say that each and every word and aspect of the book is thoroughly thought and researched. I started feeling connected to the book like I had known Lakshmi personally. The author has very well structured the book. She has also written a list of the characters at the beginning which immediately transported me to the world of the book( 1950s Jaipur, the royal palaces, Maharajas and Maharanis , their servers, the markets, people).

I loved how every character was properly developed and described. The writing style is simple yet beautiful that I wanted to finish the book in one go. Each and everything in the book is so well described that I could see each and every character in front of my eyes from the palace to the parakeet.

The best thing about the book is that no character is villain. Each character has their own reason of their own for everything that they did (each character had a story of their own).

At the end of the book, there is also a glossary which includes various words used in the book which belonged to different languages or are traditional.

I recommend this book to each and everyone of you. Go and read it as soon as possible you’ll love it.


MY RATING – 4.5/5

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

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