The House of Djinn

The House of Djinn

by Suzanne Fisher Staples


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Mumtaz, daughter of Shabanu, has lived with her father's traditional Muslim family for 10 years, enduring the scorn of her auntie Leyla day in and day out. Her only protectors are her uncle Omar and Baba, patriarch of the Amirzai tribe, but even they would disown her if they knew she had a crush on a Hindu boy. The only person Mumtaz can confide in is her cousin Jameel. Unfortunately, Jameel lives with his parents in California and he's been out of touch since he fell in love with a Jewish girl. 

When Baba dies unexpectedly, Mumtaz's world is thrown into chaos. Without Baba keeping order in the tribe, Mumtaz and Jameel find themselves thrust together in the middle of an ongoing power struggle—the same one that sent Shabanu into hiding a decade earlier.

A compelling conclusion to the trilogy that began with the Newbery Honor Book Shabanu and continued in Haveli,The House of Djinn explores the delicate balance between freedom and tradition in modern-day Pakistan.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780307976420
Publisher: Random House Children's Books
Publication date: 09/11/2012
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 224
Sales rank: 1,012,677
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.19(h) x 0.53(d)
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

SUZANNE FISHER STAPLES is an award-winning author whose novels for young adults include Dangerous Skies, Shiva's Fire, the Newbery Honor Book Shabanu, and its sequel, Haveli. Before writing books, she worked for many years as a UPI correspondent in Asia, with stints in Pakistan, Afghanistan, and India. She currently resides in Nicholson, Pennsylvania.

Read an Excerpt

From The House of Djinn

Selma led her to the doorway of the beautiful hand-carved marble summer pavilion that stood in the center of the courtyard, and ducked through the entry first. Mumtaz followed, and again her eyes had to adjust. A small figure stood in the middle of the spacious pavilion lit by the sun filtered through the intricate latticework of the screens that formed the walls. Mumtaz took two steps forward.

“My Mumtaz,” said Shabanu and held her arms open. Mumtaz turned her head toward Selma, not quite believing her eyes and ears.

“Is it my mother?” she asked Selma, who nodded, her face opening in an encouraging smile. Mumtaz looked back toward her mother in disbelief, unable to move. For a moment she just stared.

“I’ve waited so long to see you,” said Shabanu, moving toward her daughter. “I couldn’t tell you I was here, and all the while I was living just to see you again.” Mumtaz couldn’t find her voice and her feet felt planted in the stone floor. Shabanu approached her slowly and put her arms around Mumtaz. “I’ve dreamed of holding you every minute since the last time,” Shabanu said.

“I don’t understand!” Mumtaz said, unaware that tears streamed down her face. She stood rigidly and Shabanu continued to hold her. “You’ve been here all this time?” Mumtaz asked. “And you let me believe you were dead?”

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The House of Djinn 3.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
this book follows off from the books shabanu and haveli, but if you have read the books, you may be disappointed in finding that this book's main character is no longer shabanu, but her daughter mumtaz. it captures the readers attention well, and i recomend it completely. If you haven't read shabanu or haveli, i would also recomend reading those first. it was a great book.
lnommay on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Book talk:Though it took me a few chapters to really enjoy the first book in the series, Shabanu, Daughter of the Wind, by the end of the book I really cared about what was going to happen to 12-year old Shabanu as she was promised in marriage to a someone four times her age.
Nhritzuk on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The 3rd book of a trilogy, I would definitely have had a better understanding of the characters had I read, Shabanu, first. This made me go back to read Shabanu, which cleared up a lot of my questions. I needed to read this book for long chunks of time, so I spent a 4 hour subway and bus ride completing the book. I was completely engrossed in it as Suzanne Staples did an excellent job expressing the conflicting emotions that the characters felt. Due to the fact that many of the names and terms were foreign to me, I did need to create a family tree and list of vocabulary in order to better understand the story, although Staples does include a glossary at the back of the book.
joririchardson on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Suzanne Fisher Staples could have, and certainly has in the past, done better.The storyline here is - A young girl in modern Pakistan is struggling to find her place in a world where family life is a battle, and Islamic traditions confuse and frustrate her. Her life takes a shocking turn when she discovers that her mother Shabanu, supposedly dead for years, is actually alive, her beloved grandfather falls ill, and her place in the family is reversed."The House of Djinn" never captured my attention, save for small snippets here and there that richly describe the setting of exotic Pakistan. However, a handful of sentences peppered through this book are far from enough to save it.I disliked it - the characters are defined on the surface, and then left. For example, Leyla is immediately depicted as cruel, selfish, conniving. And stays that way. Not that this is bad, but I felt that the author didn't think she needed any character development.Also, the plot was a mess.The supposed villain of the book, Nazir, is built up (though, not well) through-out the story as an impending threat. The author describes him as "a tiger without teeth." However, besides being mentioned a few times, he never appears until the end of the story. And in fact, the main character faints during the time that Nazir actually emerges, and is only briefly told about it after she wakes up. Nazir never even speaks once in this entire book, and is barely mentioned. This makes him the weakest opposing character I have ever heard of.Another character who could be called a villain, Leyla, is a cruel woman who finds joy in humiliating the main character, Mumtaz, into being her servant. She is built up a bit more, and certainly far more prominent than Nazir. However, toward the end of the story, she simply vanishes. There is no conclusion to her and Mumtaz's struggles.The entire storyline was incredibly weak, jumped from focus to focus, and was ridiculously blunt and abrupt. Lastly, I felt cheated by the ending. Through out the story, Mumtaz's mother Shabanu references the pain that her arranged marriage caused. She loved another man, who also loved her. He too was forced to marry someone else, unhappily. Arranged marriage is portrayed as hurtful, and the reader simply assumes that the author does not support it.So, I was very surprised when, at the end...**SPOILERS**...It is arranged that Mumtaz will be married to her cousin. Both of them have crushes on other people, and neither of them wish to marry. At first, they rebel against their family's decisions. They even attempt to run away.It seemed apparent that Staples was sending a message - old traditions must give way to new, and forced companionship can never rival true love and freedom.But then, suddenly, within a few pages, Mumtaz and her cousin decide that actually, their family is right. Without warning, their views change, they follow the arranged marriage, and honor tradition.The ending seems more like the end of a chapter than the actual end of the entire book - not because the author used a cliffhanger (that would have taken away another star from this book, so I am glad that the author didn't try that "Buy my next book!" trick here) - but because it simply wasn't... Conclusive. I said to myself "Okay... What now?"This book had an entirely unsatisfactory ending, a message that made absolutely no sense, and one of the weakest supposed villains ever.Not recommended - read "Shabanu" instead, but don't bother with this sequel.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
seriously can't wait for it to come out!!! i love Haveli and i couldn't stand the total cliffhanger. i want to read it sooooo bad