Synopses & Reviews
Winner of the French Prix du Meilleur Livre Etranger
In his brilliant third novel, first published in 1983, Salman Rushdie gives us a lively and colorful mixture of history, art, language, politics, and religion. Set in a country "not quite Pakistan," the story centers around the family of two menone a celebrated warrior, the other a debauched playboyengaged in a protracted duel that is played out in the political landscape of their country.
"There can seldom have been so robust and baroque an incarnation of the political novel as Shame
. It can be read as a fable, polemic or excoriation; as history or as fiction . . . This is the novel as myth and as satire."Sunday Telegraph
"Shame is and is not about Pakistan, that invented, imaginary country, 'a failure of the dreaming mind' . . . The theme is shame and shamelessness, both from the violence which is modern history. Revelation and obscurity, affairs of honor, blushings of all parts, the recession of erotic life, the open violence of public life, create the extraordinary Rushdie mood . . . Rushdie shows us with what fantasy our sort of history must now be writtenif, that is, we are to penetrate it, and perhaps even save it."Malcolm Bradbury, The Guardian (London)
"Shame is every bit as good as Midnight's Children. It is a pitch-black comedy of public life and historical imperatives."The Times (London)
"Shame should consolidate his position as one of the finest young writers around. This novel of crossed family destinies in contemporary Pakistan teems with interesting characters, dramatic events, and marvellous verbal inventions. Like its predecessor, it recreates an exotic but thoroughly believable world that is a delight to experience . . . A wonderful book."Paul Stuewe, Quill and Quire
"Shame can, I think, be best enjoyed if we see it not as a novel but as one of those unclassifiable works in which certain writers of the 18th century excelledSwift in Gulliver's Travels, Voltaire in Candide, Sterne in Tristram Shandy . . . Salman Rushdie, it seems to me, is very much a latter-day member of their company . . . I found Mr. Rushdie's style a source of delight, a bright stream of words that lifted me happily."Robert Towers, The New York Times Book Review
About the Author
is the author of seven novels: Grimus, Midnight's Children, Shame, The Satanic Verses, Haroun and the Sea of Stories, The Moor's Last Sigh, The Ground Beneath Her Feet, Fury
, and one work of short stories titled East, West
. He has also published four works of nonfiction: The Jaguar Smile, Imaginary Homelands, The Wizard of Oz
, and Mirrorwork
(co-edited with Elizabeth West).