SHALIMAR THE CLOWN
A Novel by Salman Rushdie
On sale sate: Sept. 6
With SHALIMAR THE CLOWN, Salman Rushdie returns to the panoramic sweep of Midnight’s Children and The Satanic Verses, combining a personal story of profound emotion with a social document of corresponding complexity.
Los Angeles, 1991, Ambassador Maximilian Ophuls, one of the makers of the modern world, is murdered in broad daylight on his illegitimate daughter India’s doorstep, knifed by his Kashmiri Muslim driver, a mysterious figure who calls himself Shalimar the clown. The dead man is a World War II Resistance hero, a man of great intellectual ability and erotic appeal, a former ambassador to India, and subsequently America’s counterterrorism chief. The murder looks at first like political assassination, but turns out to be personal.
This is the story of Max, his killer, and his daughter—and of a fourth character, the woman who links them. An epic narrative that moves from California to Kashmir, France, England, and back to California, SHALIMAR THE CLOWN includes tales of princesses lured from their homes by demons and legends of kings forced to defend their kingdoms against evil. There is kindness and magic, but there is also war, ugly, unavoidable, and seemingly interminable. And there is always love, gained and lost, uncommonly beautiful and mortally dangerous.
Spanning the globe and darting through history, Rushdie’s narrative captures the heart of the reader and the spirit of a troubled age.
Salman Rushdie is the author of eight previous novels--Grimus, Midnight's Children (for which he won the Booker Prize and the "Booker of Bookers"), Shame, The Satanic Verses, Haroun and the Sea of Stories, The Moor's Last Sigh, The Ground Beneath Her Feet, and Fury--and one collection of short stories, East, West. He has also published five works of nonfiction: The Jaguar Smile, Imaginary Homelands, The Wizard of Oz, Mirrorwork, and Step Across This Line.