The Henna ArtistAlka Joshi

The Henna Artist

4.5 star

Total 1,474 Ratings

The Henna Artist by Alka Joshi Book Summary



"Captivated me from the first chapter to the final page."—Reese Witherspoon

Vivid and compelling in its portrait of one woman’s struggle for fulfillment in a society pivoting between the traditional and the modern, The Henna Artist opens a door into a world that is at once lush and fascinating, stark and cruel.

Escaping from an abusive marriage, seventeen-year-old Lakshmi makes her way alone to the vibrant 1950s pink city of Jaipur. There she becomes the most highly requested henna artist—and confidante—to the wealthy women of the upper class. But trusted with the secrets of the wealthy, she can never reveal her own…

Known for her original designs and sage advice, Lakshmi must tread carefully to avoid the jealous gossips who could ruin her reputation and her livelihood. As she pursues her dream of an independent life, she is startled one day when she is confronted by her husband, who has tracked her down these many years later with a high-spirited young girl in tow—a sister Lakshmi never knew she had. Suddenly the caution that she has carefully cultivated as protection is threatened. Still she perseveres, applying her talents and lifting up those that surround her as she does.

“Eloquent and moving…Joshi masterfully balances a yearning for self-discovery with the need for familial love.”—Publishers Weekly

Look for The Secret Keeper of Jaipur from New York Times bestselling author Alka Joshi!

The Henna Artist (Alka Joshi) Book Reviews

Awesome read!I really enjoyed this book and all the colorful characters and especially the Indian culture. The book had lots of twists and turns of events and I loved it. This book was a first for me with this author. Very good!!.Score: 5/5

Great story: beautifully written.I enjoyed reading this novel. Took me there and kept me interested..Score: 4/5

Absolutely loved it ❤️ didn’t want it to end.Absolutely loved it! Alka has done a commendable job in writing Lakshmi’s story. Character portrayal along with scene description is remarkable. Especially the relationship that Radha, Lakshmi and Kanta shared reminded me of my younger sister. I was just not ready for the story to end. It not only took me back to India but also made me proud of the rich culture we have. I am looking forward to the sequel. Cheers!.Score: 5/5

Beautiful readLoved and enjoyed the book! Would love to travel to India now..Score: 5/5

Beautiful storyThis story grabbed me from the first page and I couldn’t put it down. Alka Joshi’s writing is vivid and her characters feel very real. Step into a world where a woman defies tradition to become strong, independent and rewrite her story..Score: 5/5

Henna artistGreat story- and a reminder how our journeys through life change..Score: 5/5

The Henna Artist by Alka JoshiI recently read this book, and I loved it! As an Indian-American, I always love reading books with South Asian representation! It was so cool to get a glimpse into 1950s Jaipur; I loved the setting. I also thought that the book was really empowering for women! The characters were flawed and realistic, and yet I sympathized with them every step of the way. This was definitely one of my favorite books I’ve read this year!.Score: 5/5

Love!!I loved this book and did not want to put it down. I enjoyed learning the culture and Alka Joshi did a wonderful job with the details of the entire book including the character list and glossary of terms. I recommend to all of my friends!.Score: 5/5

LovelyThis was such a fantastic read. I do recommend reading along with a. audiobook to make some things better to understand but the story is a great one with a happy ending. 10/10 would recommend..Score: 5/5

Amazing book!I was sad when finished this book... so so good!.Score: 5/5

4/5Love loved it! Read it within a day. Could not put down. The author paints beautifully vivid pictures with her words..Score: 4/5

Ok readReading about Indian customs, food,traditions was very interesting. Story was good but predictable..Score: 3/5

GreatExcellent reading!.Score: 5/5

A must readI love everything about this book. A story of hurt , redemption, love, sacrifice and strength . Lakshmi ,at 17 years old escapes her abusive marriage and heads to Jaipur. After living in Jaipur she establishes herself as a popular henna artist and a herbalist . Her dream was to own her home , but as she works her way to success Her estranged husband and her 13yr old sister ( who she didn’t even know exist ), showed up and all her plans are turned upside down.Score: 5/5

The Henna ArtistA very readable novel. I learned so much about Indian culture.Score: 4/5

Good but not greatI appreciated the change of scenery this book gave me of being transported to the works of henna painting of wealthy Indian women. However, I found the book to be a bit monotonous and predictable in some ways, and the characters pretty one dimensional..Score: 3/5

Loved!!I loved this book. I listened on audio and I was so sucked in. Really well done.Score: 5/5

EnchantingI ignored most of my life for 2 days as I read about the Henna Artist.. I am looking forward to the next book in the series,,.Score: 5/5

Colorful descriptions, good storyThe story of a single woman trying to make her way in a country where her gender and her place in society both constantly put roadblocks in her way is good and sometimes uplifting. I loved how the story was steeped in descriptions of dialect, clothing, food and how a person lived in that part of Asia in the 50’s. As I said, the story was a good one and relatable. The characters are believable and well rounded..Score: 4/5

Loved being transported...While being immersed into another culture.Score: 5/5

4/5 for predictabilityCaptivating and enlightening into some of the Indian cultures and history. I found this book difficult to put down. However, I did rate a four and not a five due to the predictability of her solutions with the child and her choices with her life in the end..Score: 4/5

Compelling and Imaginative StoryAlka Joshi reimagines a life for her mother, who was in an arranged marriage at 18 and had three children by age 22. The main character, Lakshmi, leaves an abusive husband and sets out on her own to build a new life. An accomplished henna artist, she is much in demand by the upper class women of Jaipur, India. Ambiition, family, class and castes, betrayal, redemption, and love, all work together in this compelling story..Score: 5/5

Fascinating!I’ve always been fascinated by Indian culture, and this book made the vibrant colors dance in my head, page after page after page. I look forward to more from this author!.Score: 5/5

Interesting!First, it’s a great story filled with beautiful and privileged people and those who serve them. The author somehow explains the caste system and customs in such a way that evokes sympathy rather than repulsion. There is a very graphic sex scene towards the end. That makes some of my friends more interested in reading it, and a few rule it out..Score: 4/5

AmazingFantastic book that will give you a deep appreciation for the rich Indian culture.Score: 5/5

Lovely storyNot only interesting but educational Loved the characters and look forward to the next book..Score: 5/5

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