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The Secret Keeper of Jaipur

Author: Alka Joshi

Started: Oct. 20, 2021

Finished: Oct. 24, 2021

This is the continued story of Lakshmi and Malik from The Henna Artist. Lakshmi is now married and helping her husband and his patients in the Himalayan village of Shimla. Malik, now a grown man, has met a widow with two children he begins to fall in love with. Lakshmi sends Malik back to Jaipur to learn all he can about the construction industry. As he begins his internship at the leading construction company in Jaipur, there is a major tragedy when the balcony of the newly built Royal Jewel Cinema collapses. Malik begins to think that something sinister has taken place and he is determined to find out what.

Meanwhile, back in Shimla, Nimmi, Malik's beloved is dealing with drama of her own. As she begins to help Lakshmi and her husband at the Community Hospital, she helps care for an injured sheep that two village children have brought in. One look at the sheep's markings let her know that the sheep belongs to her brother and the sheep's injury makes her aware that the sheep are being used for smuggling. She must do whatever she can to keep her family safe.

While this book does not pick up where The Henna Artist left off it does allow us to see what the main characters' lives are like 12 years later. It was nice to reacquaint myself with Lakshmi and see that she finally has the happiness she had been searching for. Malik, once a wily orphan, has now grown into an intelligent, responsible man ready for a family of his own.

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