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Shalimar The Clown Hardcover – 1 Sep 2005

4.5 out of 5 stars 26 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Jonathan Cape; First Edition edition (1 Sept. 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0224061615
  • ISBN-13: 978-0224061612
  • Product Dimensions: 16 x 3.2 x 24 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 318,517 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

'Rushdie combines the wonder of fairy tale with the grittiness of hard, political realism'. -- The Observer

'Rushdie is back on tip-top form with his inimitable high-octane prose.' -- Tatler Magazine

'Rushdie's greatest novel since 'The Satanic Verses'... There are few writers who can pull off such an act...transparent, extraordinary writing.' -- Los Angeles Times

'Shalimar the Clown finds [Rushdie]...writing at his best.' -- Evening Standard

'Shalimar...dramatises the fusion of personal calamity and - legitimate - political complaint into a volatile, and deadly, mixture of motives.' -- The Independent

'The book is a rare highwire act, a literary thriller.' -- Financial Times Magazine

'This is masterful fiction, to be sure, but, also and especially, all too real.' -- Newsweek International

'a magical-realist masterpiece that equals, and arguably surpasses, the achievements of 'Midnight's Children', 'Shame' and 'The Moor's Last Sigh'.' -- Kirkus

‘Like his best work, it traverses tumultuous passages of national history'. -- Philip Hensher, Telegraph

‘a book about the dark side of storytelling…reminds us that nationhood and identity are not one and the same’. -- David Robinson, The Scotsman

Book Description

Rushdie's finest novel for years (2004-11-09)

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Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Salman Rushdie’s novel “Shalimar The Clown” begins with the dedication for the author’s Kashimiri grandparents and is, basically, about Kashmir, about Hindu-Muslim relationship in the area, about the artists and cooks village of Pachigam, about two youngsters Muslim Shalimar the clown and Hindu beauty dancer Boonyi, about their love, inter-religious marriage, Boonyi’s betrayal, Shalimar’s revenge, and then, also, Indo-Pak war because of Kashmir. It’s a book about reality, about destroyed values, the book that goes deep into ones soul, involving everything life can involve and, as if, smiling through tears at life’s total absurdity. The author masterfully pictures the way life is, opens characters’ souls, showing their ambitions, dreams, expectations, jealousy, love, lust and hatred. The story of the novel, the message sent through the novel, the way the novel is written and author’s knowledge – all was pretty shocking to me. Technically, the novel is very harmonious which was very satisfying to read and every phrase and sentence seemed to be worth learning by heart, taken as the words of wisdom or just written on the walls of one’s room. Although the story is about Kashmiri people, about what was happening in Kashmir and India (and about Europe in WW2 and today’s LA), for me it seemed like a story about humans and humanity, no matter which religion or continent they belong to, solving the great questions of being.Read more ›
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Format: Hardcover
This novel is a tale of love and revenge, of paradise torn asunder and a cultural lesson on Kashmir. The story takes us through Europe during the second world war, India and Kashmir over large parts of the 20th century, and California in modern day. As much as the story enchants, it is sometimes surrounded by too many lessons from our author. But when it picks up speed during the second half of the book, it is captivating, and the final pages are impossible to put down. A worthy read, Rushdie's language is mesmerizing, at least when he sticks to the story...
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Whilst set against a complex political past, this is as much a story of love and betrayal as it is a story of war and conflict. An interesting read with exquisitely drawn characters. The most compelling moments are those set in the beautiful Kashmiri past. The characters there are far more finely drawn and intriguing than the main character of Max Ophuls or India/Kashmira, despite the large amount of the novel dedicated to them. As fine as Midnight's Children? No. Better than a lot of novels? Yes.
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Format: Paperback
With a rich and strongly descriptive style reminiscent of Midnight's Children, Rushdie tells the tale of a love affair gone wrong, polluted by conflict, lust, and betrayal.

The story takes places in different parts of the world, each described so vividly and in such detail that the reader is under the illusion of really being present.

Rushdie introduces a great number of exotic and interesting characters, whose life stories seem nothing but entertaining on the surface but are in fact full of symbolism.

This book, like all of the novels I have read by Rushdie, has multiple dimensions. On the surface it is a tale of a love affair tainted by betrayal and with horrific consequences. On a deeper level one finds the story of Kashmir, a beautiful region torn between Pakistan and India, losing its identity and its natural beauty in the conflict. The third dimension is that of the human struggle, what human beings might or might not do in the face of betrayal and oppression, feeling the need to redefine themselves, obtaining new goals and identities in order to survive and face up to their fate.

This book has left me with a deep impression of Kashmir, and with a sense of sadness for the loss of its beauty in the face of violence. Rushdie has touched me to the core with this novel.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
After a period of time writing books which showcased his superb written skills but were about not much in particular (Fury, The Ground Beneath Her Feet), Rushdie returned to form with Shalimar the Clown. This in particular focuses on the destruction of a tolerant Kashmir under the feet of Islamic insurgency and Indian repression. More generally it treats of the drift towards ethnic partisanship. There are lots of events including a thrilling finale. And his writing is still superb.
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Format: Hardcover
I read this a while ago with Amazon's special offer for shortlisted Booker prize authors. Like all his stuff it feels slightly surreal to start with, then as he pulls the curtains back on the scene you see a larger and larger context. I had read about the devastation of Kashmir but somehow this showed the complexity and the madness of it all, the rise of insurgence / extremism out of poverty when your beautiful country is being destroyed and you're caught between the monsters. The story line was compelling and the language as usual dry, humorous, rich, sardonic and made you quietly gasp in its understated description of horrific events both on a grand and personal scale. One of the best books I've read in a while.
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