Shalimar the Clown

  • by Salman Rushdie
  • Narrated by Aasif Mandvi
  • 18 hrs and 6 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

From Salman Rushdie, New York Times best-selling author, Booker Prize-winner, and one of the great voices in contemporary literature, comes a majestic novel that solidifies the author's right to a Nobel Prize, which Kirkus Reviews says "he deserves more than any other living writer". When Maximilian Ophuls is murdered outside his daughter's home by his Kashmiri Muslim driver, it appears to be a political killing. Ophuls is the former U.S. ambassador to India and America's leading figure in counter-terrorism. But there is much more to Ophuls and his assassin, a mysterious man calling himself "Shalimar the Clown", than meets the eye. One woman is at the center of their shared history, a history of betrayal and deception that moves from World War II Europe to the troubled Kashmir region to contemporary America.
Rushdie effortlessly weaves a series of interconnected narratives to form a sweeping and ambitious tale, at once timeless and startlingly modern, that reaches back through the years and across the continents.


What the Critics Say

2005 Publishers Weekly Listen Up Award, Fiction
"Shalimar the Clown is a powerful parable about the willing and unwilling subversion of multiculturalism." (Publishers Weekly)
"If Rushdie cannot make you see and smell and feel the loveliness of life in Kashmir, he does, finally, make a commanding story of its loss." (The New York Times Book Review)
"A masterly deployment of interconnected narratives spanning six decades....Dazzling....A magical-realist masterpiece." (Kirkus Reviews)
"A cogent descriptor of Rushdie's sheer and magnificent talent. His beautifully metaphoric language and sly sense of humor keep his complex plot, with its layers of personal and cosmic meaning, tightly woven." (Booklist)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Complex, Exotic, Suspenseful

I have never read Rushdie before but now I am beginning to understand his popularity. This book begins with a murder and then proceeds to fill in with backstory of extreme detail. It is this story in Kashmir that I found to be, at first, somewhat daunting. The names, words, customs and history were very foreign and a bit difficult to wrap my mind around. However, after hanging in there I became more comfortable with it and began to understand and get very involved. By the second half of the story I was hooked. The story kept me on the so-called "edge of my seat" to the last line.
The writing is excellent and has a supernatural quality. The narration was perfect, considering all of the foreign words and accents required.
Excellent, although not for everyone.
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I've been working my way through all of Salman Rushdie's works, and this latest book in an incredible read or listen. Like all of his works, Rushdie delves heavily into parallel dimensions, west/east, past/present, male/female, but also manages to tell a tale that will keep you on the edge of your seat for most of the second half of the book. I was particularly impresed by the ending - well done, Mr. Rushdie!

Also worth noting is that the narrator does an excellent job, and his accent and delivery do a great deal to smooth out sections that would otherwise be difficult to western ears.
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- Barry

Book Details

  • Release Date: 09-12-2005
  • Publisher: Recorded Books