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Shalimar the Clown by Salman Rushdie
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Shalimar the Clown (2005)

by Salman Rushdie

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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2,510473,682 (3.82)55

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» See also 55 mentions

English (44)  Dutch (2)  Finnish (1)  All languages (47)
Showing 1-5 of 44 (next | show all)
Not my cup of tea. Part way through I said, "Do I care? No." and tossed it. ( )
  MaryHeleneMele | May 6, 2019 |
Excerpts from my original GR review (Mar 18 2013):
- Rushdie's novel is a multilayered, rather dense saga of an ill-fated young love, and the larger, tortured history of mid-century Kashmir.
- It begins in L.A., where debonair, but aged, Max Ophuls, ex-American diplomat, lives easily with stepdaughter India. From chapter two onward, we are taken back in time, first to 1960s Kashmir, where the relatively peaceful coexistence of Hindus and Muslims is coming under stress. Traditional festivals and colorful villagers..form a background for the illicit 14-year old attractions of a Muslim boy and Hindu girl. Acceptance of their coupling is hard won in the community, but Kashmir itself is a hotbed of "iron mullahs" on one extreme and the resolute Indian Army on the other.
- Midway the novel flashes back to Max Ophul's survival in..his beloved Strasbourg, in Alsace, unable to coerce his strident Jewish parents away from their home, and away from the blackness awaiting them when the Nazis come.
- We learn of the evolution of Shalimar, from innocent young tightrope performer in simpler days, to anguished and angry and gullible recruit into some very dishonorable circles.
- Rushdie's writing is..intellectually challenging.. At times I felt immersed, at other times disconnected, and unable to grasp the cultural digressions. In the end, the story didn't resonate with me in it's entirety, yet there were episodes and descriptions that glimmered.. ( )
  ThoughtPolice | Jan 31, 2018 |
Ο Σαλιμάρ ο Κλόουν, είναι ένα βιβλίο για την αγάπη σε ένα κόσμο σαν τον δικό μας, αλλά όχι ακριβώς. Μπορεί ο πόλεμος και οι θρησκευτικές διαφορές να μην μας αγγίζουν ακριβώς, αλλά η αλληγορία και μόνο που μεταφέρουν αυτές οι έννοιες, μπορούν να μας δώσουν να καταλάβουμε αυτό που κρύβεται πίσω τους. Ο άνθρωπος θα είναι πάντα αδύναμος και άπληστος και πάντα θα θέλει περισσότερα από αυτά που έχει. Κι ο έρωτας ποτέ δεν θα πάψει να μας τυφλώνει, μπορεί όμως να μην οπλίσει το χέρι μας η προδοσία του αγαπημένου κι εκεί να κάνουμε την υπέρβαση. Είναι ένα μάθημα ζωής δοσμένο με τη μαεστρία του Ρουσντί. ( )
  GeorgiaKo | May 27, 2016 |
This was a fantastic listening. It's a mixed between a political story due to recruiting men for the cause of the Mudschahedin but also the political mess at Kashmir where people especially women weren't safe even the military was bad. It is also a folk tale where the different godhoods show their power and how people got influenced but it is also the story of a young woman who is looking for her roots and how she detects her strength and power which she has got in her genes from her ancestor.
It's a fast-paced story which I can strongly recommend. ( )
  Ameise1 | Sep 14, 2015 |
Rushdie applies his omnipresent style to Vichy and the Resistance, Kashmir, LA in the '90's and more. Deep insight into the tensions between the US, Pakistan and India (and Russia), especially as it relates to the tragedy and betrayal of Kashmir. Superb detail regarding Hindu/Muslim culture differences, as usual. ( )
  mabroms | Sep 3, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 44 (next | show all)
' "Shalimar the Clown" is hobbled by Mr. Rushdie's determination to graft huge political and cultural issues onto a flimsy soap opera plot.... What is most engaging about this novel - and represents a return to form, after two particularly weak and poorly observed novels - is Mr. Rushdie's creation of several compelling characters....'
 

» Add other authors (15 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Salman Rushdieprimary authorall editionscalculated
Santen, Karina vanTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Vosmaer, MartineTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Information from the Dutch Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
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Epigraph
"I am being rowed through Paradise on a river of Hell:
Exquisite ghost, it is night.
The paddle is a heart; it breaks the porcelain waves...

I'm everything you lost. You won't forgive me.
My memory keeps getting in the way of your history.
There is nothing to forgive. You won't forgive me.
I hi my pain even from myself; I revealed my pain only to myself.
There is everything to forgive. You can't forgive me.
If only somehow you could have been mine, what would not have been possible in the world."
— Agha Shahid Ali, The Country Without a Post Office
"A plague on both your houses."
— Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare
Dedication
In loving memory of my Kashmiri grandparents
Dr. Ataullah and Amir un nissa Butt
(Babajan and Ammaji)
First words
At twenty-four the ambassador's daughter slept badly through the warm, unsurprising nights.
Quotations
Everybody was sensitive nowadays. Everybody had a vocabulary to peddle. Words had become as painful as sticks and stones, or maybe skins had become thinner. India blamed the ozone layer, apologized and changed the subject.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
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Original language
Information from the Dutch Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
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Wikipedia in English (2)

Book description
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0679783482, Paperback)


“Dazzling . . . Modern thriller, Ramayan epic, courtroom drama, slapstick comedy, wartime adventure, political satire, village legend–they’re all blended here magnificently.”
The Washington Post Book World

This is the story of Maximilian Ophuls, America’s counterterrorism chief, one of the makers of the modern world; his Kashmiri Muslim driver and subsequent killer, a mysterious figure who calls himself Shalimar the clown; Max’s illegitimate daughter India; and a woman who links them, whose revelation finally explains them all. It is an epic narrative that moves from California to Kashmir, France, and England, and back to California again. Along the way there are tales of princesses lured from their homes by demons, legends of kings forced to defend their kingdoms against evil. And there is always love, gained and lost, uncommonly beautiful and mortally dangerous.

“A commanding story . . . [a] harrowing climax . . . Revenge is an ancient and powerful engine of narrative.”
–The New York Times Book Review

“Absorbing . . . Everywhere [Rushdie] takes us there is both love and war, in strange and terrifying combinations, painted in swaying, swirling, world-eating prose that annihilates the borders between East and West, love and hate, private lives and the history they make.”
Time

“A vast, richly peopled, beautiful and deeply rageful book that serves as a profound and disturbing artifact of our times.”
San Francisco Chronicle

“Marvelous . . . brilliant . . . a story worthy of [Rushdie’s] genius.”
Detroit Free Press

ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR
– The Washington Post Book World –Los Angeles Times Book Review –St. Louis Post-Dispatch –Rocky Mountain News

ONE OF THE BEST NOVELS OF THE YEAR
–Time –Chicago Tribune –The Christian Science Monitor

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:02:34 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

"Los Angeles, 1991. Maximilian Ophuls, one of the makers of the modern world, is knifed to death in broad daylight on the doorstep of his illegitimate daughter India, slaughtered 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 formidable intellectual ability and much erotic appeal, a former United States ambassador to India, and subsequently America's counter-terrorism chief. The murder looks at first like a political assassination but turns out to be passionately personal.". "This is the story of Max, his killer, and his daughter - and of a fourth character, the woman who links them, whose revelation finally explains them all. It is a narrative that moves from California to Kashmir, France, and England, and back to California again. Along the way there are tales of princesses lured from their homes by demons, legends of kings forced to defend their kingdoms against evil. There is kindness and there is magic capable of producing miracles, but there is also war - ugly, unavoidable, and seemingly interminable. And there is always love, gained and lost, uncommonly beautiful and mortally dangerous."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

» see all 9 descriptions

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